FX recently gave a series order to adapt one of Octavia E. Butler’s most beloved works Kindred for the small screen.
The network ordered an eight-episode season of the sci-fi novel with Janicza Bravo attached to direct the pilot and Branden Jacobs-Jenkins set to pen the script and is also the showrunner.
Based on MacArthur Fellow and Hugo Award winner Butler’s 1979 novel, Kindred follows Dana (played by newcomer Mallori Johnson), a young Black woman and aspiring writer who has uprooted her life of familial obligation and relocated to Los Angeles, ready to claim a future that, for once, feels all her own.
But before Dana can get settled into her new home, she finds herself being violently pulled back and forth in time to a 19th Century plantation with which she and her family are surprisingly and intimately linked. An interracial romance threads through her past and present, and the clock is ticking as she struggles to confront the secrets she never knew ran through her blood, in a “genre-breaking exploration of the ties that bind.”
Ryan Kwanten, Micah Stock, Gayle Rankin, Austin Smith, Antoinette Crowe-Legacy, and David Alexander Kaplan have also been cast in the series.
The novel, which sold over a million copies, has been hailed as a visionary work of science fiction since it was first published more than four decades ago.
Bravo and Jacobs-Jenkins will also executive produce the series alongside Courtney Lee-Mitchell, Ari Handel, and Black Swan director Darren Aronofsky, as wells as The Americans showrunners Joe Weisberg and Joel Fields, Ernestine Walker, and Merrilee Heifetz.
Nick Grad, President of Original Programming at FX, previewed the project by saying, “Branden Jacobs-Jenkins has done a phenomenal job of adapting Kindred for FX and honoring the legacy and timeless value of Octavia Butler’s groundbreaking novel.” He adds, “The pilot directed by Janicza Bravo is brilliant and we can’t wait to resume production with this incredibly talented and dedicated cast.”