Books

Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse is Coming to Netflix!

Recently, Deadline exclusively revealed that Netflix has greenlighted an 8 episode first season of an adaption of Leigh Bardugo’s hugely successful Shadow and Bone trilogy and Six of Crows duology, which are set in the same world. The TV series, which is named Shadow and Bone, will be in the hands of showrunner Eric Heisserer, who has written many highly praised movies. Shawn Levy, executive producer of Stranger Things, will be one of the executive producers on this series as will Bardugo, who will have a say in the changes that are made in the adaptation of her novels.

Bardugo revealed in a newsletter sent out to fans (sign up for the newsletter here!) that she had to “kiss a lot of frogs” before finding her prince in Netflix. Collectively, the Grishaverse books have sold over two million copies worldwide, meaning they are hot properties for film and TV companies. Bardugo went to many meetings in which people tried to convince her the rights to her books, but none of them felt right. Some people went about trying to convince her in entirely the wrong way: one exec told her that he loved Six of Crows because it was full of “guy stuff”(it was a very short meeting). Others just made Bardugo feel uncertain about whether her books would be safe in their hands.

The Netflix execs, on the other hand, made Bardugo feel that they cared about adapting her books in the right way. So far, they seem to be doing an excellent job as they have hired a writer who is used to transforming stories into scripts. Heisserer was nominated for an Oscar in 2016 for adapting Ted Chiang’s short story Story of Your Life into the screenplay for the critically-acclaimed Arrival.

Leigh Bardugo with Eric Heisserer, and Pouya Shahbazian, her film manager. Image via Bardugo’s newsletter.

When the news first broke about Netflix adapting these books into a series, many fans were super excited because these amazing books would get more exposure and Netflix had done such a great job at adapting Jenny Han’s To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before into a movie. But the fact that the stories of the Shadow and Bone and the Six of Crows duology would be merged, worried most people. The timelines of these series are very separate; the events of Six of Crows take place two years after the events of Ruin and Rising (the third book in the trilogy).

However, Bardugo’s newsletter set fans’ minds at ease as she said that she sees the first season as a combination of the first book in Shadow and Bone and “book zero” of Six of Crows. So, the first season will likely focus on the plot of Shadow and Bone, as well as showing the backstories of the main characters in Six of Crows. Leigh Bardugo’s 7th addition to her Grishaverse, King of Scars, comes out on January 29th; if the series does well and gets picked up for more seasons, they may focus on this book and its sequel in the later seasons.

There is no mention of who will star in Shadow and Bone yet, so it’s likely they will be starting the casting process very soon. Bardugo did mention in her newsletter that she wanted more diversity in the characters of Shadow and Bone.

There is currently no release date for Shadow and Bone, so we will have to wait as patiently as we can. I would highly recommend reading (or re-reading) the books in the meantime. For a non-spoilery review of the Six of Crows duology, read this article.

Featured image via Macmillan Publishing

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