In 2019, readers learned that the New York Times-bestselling novel Children of Blood and Bone by Nigerian-American novelist Tomi Adeyemi was in development for a big-screen adaptation. So, what do we know about the movie, and when can we expect it?
In 2020, Lucasfilm announced it had partnered with 20th Century Studios on the project. It was to be the first Lucasfilm project post-Disney acquisition that fell outside of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises. Unfortunately, Lucasfilm took too long in developing the project, and they lost their rights to the property.
A fierce bidding war ensued—including big players like Netflix, Amazon Studios, and Universal Pictures—but it was ultimately Paramount Pictures which secured the film's rights.
The novel is the first in the Legacy of Orïsha trilogy, followed by Children of Virtue and Vengeance, and an as yet untitled third book due out in 2023.
This West African-inspired young adult fantasy follows Zélie Adebola, who must risk everything in order to bring magic back to her kingdom. Though many dangers lie ahead in her journeys —from vicious creatures to vengeful spirits to politics—the gravest danger may be her own struggle for control over her powers.
Tomi Adeyemi will pen the script for the film herself, and will also serve as an executive producer on the project, ensuring the movie stays true to its roots. In March of 2022, she shared that a draft had been completed.
Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen of Temple Hill Entertainment and Karen Rosenfelt of Sunswept Entertainment are signed on as producers. When the film was first announced in 2019, Rick Famuyiwa—the director for several episodes of The Mandalorian—was attached to direct. There’s no word on whether this creative choice has changed or remained the same.
As yet, there’s no news on casting or when audiences can expect to see a finished product. However, the deal with Paramount Pictures included a guaranteed theatrical release, instead of tossing it straight to streaming. With such a talented creative team and the fantastic framework of this instant bestselling novel, it’s sure to be well worth the wait.