Lucasfilm Reportedly Shifting Away From "New" Projects After Losing Children of Blood and Bone Rights
One of the biggest surprises of Disney's 2020 Investor Day was definitely the presentation from Lucasfilm, which shed light on a number of the studio's upcoming film and television projects. Among a number of Star Wars projects, as well as new installments for Indiana Jones and Willow, the studio announced plans to adapt Children of Blood and Bone, the best-selling young adult fantasy novel from Tomi Adeyemi. Since December of 2020, updates surrounding Lucasfilm's plans for the franchise were essentially nonexistent — until earlier this month, when it was announced that the project had now found a home at Paramount. A new breakdown from The Hollywood Reporter sheds light on the franchise's move away from Lucasfilm, revealing that the project ultimately stalled in the development stage as focus was put on Star Wars installments instead. Sources cited in the report also allege that Lucasfilm has "decidedly" shifted away from new projects and IP, instead focusing on things already under their umbrella.
According to their reporting, the project originally found its way to Lucasfilm after the rights were picked up by Fox 2000 in 2017, and thus became part of the ever-growing number of projects in the shuffle of Disney's purchase of Fox. Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy reportedly took an interest in the project around that time, with The Mandalorian and Dope director Rick Famuyiwa attached to it at one point.
In the months following the 2020 Disney Investor Day, Adeyemi reportedly grew frustrated with the lack of forward momentum on the Children of Blood and Bone adaptation, and suggested to Lucasfilm that she should be writing the script, something that Lucasfilm was reportedly unable to accommodate. As a result, the project was put into a multi-month bidding war in the fall of 2021, before Paramount grabbed it in early January. Adeyemi is now lined up to both write and executive produce the project, which is reportedly being fast-tracked at Paramount.
Children of Blood and Bone follows a young orphan named Zélie, who fights back against an evil king that commits atrocities against her people, the Maji, who practice magic. The first two books in the series, Children of Blood and Bone and Children of Virtue and Vengeance, were published in 2018 and 2019, with a third book reportedly due to debut in 2023.
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