Ava DuVernay is re-teaming with her ‘Queen Sugar’ collaborator, Victoria Mahoney, to turn Octavia E. Butler’s 1987 science fiction novel ‘Dawn’ into a TV series for Amazon Prime Video. ‘Dawn’ was the first part of a trilogy, which also included ‘Adulthood Rites’, and ‘Imago’. The three were published together in the volume ‘Xenogenesis’, and later as ‘Lilith’s Brood’.
Here is the description of the novel ‘Dawn’:
Lilith Iyapo has just lost her husband and son when atomic fire consumes Earth—the last stage of the planet’s final war. Hundreds of years later Lilith awakes, deep in the hold of a massive alien spacecraft piloted by the Oankali—who arrived just in time to save humanity from extinction. They have kept Lilith and other survivors asleep for centuries, as they learned whatever they could about Earth. Now it is time for Lilith to lead them back to her homeworld, but life among the Oankali on the newly resettled planet will be nothing like it was before. The Oankali survive by genetically merging with primitive civilizations—whether their new hosts like it or not. For the first time since the nuclear holocaust, Earth will be inhabited. Grass will grow, animals will run, and people will learn to survive the planet’s untamed wilderness. But their children will not be human. Not exactly.
The TV rights to ‘Dawn’ and the rest of Butler’s trilogy were optioned by Macro Productions in 2015, with Allen Bain (‘Revenge of the Green Dragons’) attached to produce, but it looks like that iteration stalled. Macro Productions remains attached and is partnering with DuVernay’s ARRAY distribution company.
Last year, DuVernay produced Netflix’s Emmy-nominated miniseries ‘When They See Us’. Her documentary, ’13th’ won an Emmy and was nominated for the Academy Awards. Her film ‘Selma’ was also nominated for the Golden Globes.
She is currently directing and producing the pilot for the comic book adaptation ‘DMZ’ for HBO Max. She is also attached to helm the comic book adaptation ‘New Gods’ based on the Jack Kirby-created DC Comics characters.
She is a director of rare distinction as she has had her likeness immortalized as both a Mattel Barbie doll and a Funko Pop! vinyl figurine.
Mahoney holds the distinction of being the first woman to direct part of a ‘Star Wars’ movie as she served as a second unit director on ‘The Rise of Skywalker’. In addition to directing an episode of DuVernay’s ‘Queen Sugar’, Mahoney has helmed episodes of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’, ‘American Crime’, ‘Claws’, and ‘Power’. She recently directed the pilot for the series ‘Under the Bridge’ for CBS and is set to tackle an episode of HBO’s ‘Lovecraft Country’, produced by Jordan Peele’s Monkeypaw Entertainment.
This project is in the earliest stages of development so check back for updates as they arrive.