Zola director Janicza Bravo will direct and serve as executive producer on the FX pilot for Kindred — an adaptation of the novel written by prolific science-fiction writer Octavia E. Butler.
According to Deadline, the project originates from Watchmen writers Branden Jacobs-Jenkins and Courtney Lee-Mitchell, in collaboration with Darren Aronofsky’s Protozoa Pictures. Joe Weisberg and Joel Fields (writers and producers of the FX show The Americans) will also produce Kindred, with newcomer actress Mallori Johnson set to star.
The book sold over one million copies and has seen a resurgence in interest and popularity since the novel was first published in 1979. Bravo talks about the impact the book had on her life after reading it in college.
“I first read Kindred 20 years ago,” said Bravo. “I was in college. I hadn’t ever seen myself in a world like that. And certainly not at its centre. What might seem like only a portrait of an invisible woman is also a potent embrace of our relationship to history and how it can bring us closer to our future. After what felt like losing over a year of the life I had come to know so well, an opportunity to direct an adaptation of this specific text was a win. On top of that, getting to partner with Branden is something I’d been wanting for quite some time.”
Kindred is a time-travel story that follows Dana, a young Black woman who just arrived in Los Angeles. Once she settles into her new home, she is suddenly transported back and forth between modern-day LA and a 19th-century plantation that her family lineage has a connection to.
Kindred was adapted into a graphic novel by Damian Duffy and John Jennings. The book won the 2018 Eisner Award for Best Adaptation from Another Medium.
Production on the pilot is on track to start this September.