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Octavia Butler’s ‘Dawn’ to Be Adapted into TV Series by Ava DuVernay and Victoria Mahoney

If asked about the greatest science fiction and fantasy authors of all time, Octavia Butler is a name mentioned time and again – and deservedly so. As the author of about fourteen books and numerous short stories that center the experiences of black female characters, Butler fundamentally changed the landscape of popular fiction and helped open the door of opportunity for all future black speculative writers.

Fans have long awaited for her transformative work to be adapted in some form. Besides a few rumors and apparent dead ends, there has been little progress in these supposed endeavors.

Until now. Sci-fi fans rejoice, because the rumors are actually true – Butler’s 1987 novel Dawn will be adapted into a television series, and this adaptation has added director Ava DuVernay and writer Victoria Mahoney onto its executive creative team.


Now, this announcement is not a total surprise. We have known that a Dawn adaptation was in the works since 2015 under producer Allen Bain, a somewhat indie creator known for such films as Revenge of the Green Dragons and Blackballed: The Bobby Dukes Story. While he admitted that developing the series would take about two years, the total lack of updates about his progress has caused a bit of anxiety about the future of this project.

With these recent additions to production, the show’s future now seems much more solid. Mahoney will of course write the screenplay, and DuVernay will executive produce the series along with Bain, Kim Roth, Poppy Hanks, Gary Pearl, Thomas L. Carter and Teddy King. Additionally, Charles D. King’s Macro Ventures will support the production crew in the development of this new series and its distinct diversity.

For those who are unfamiliar with this particular Butler masterpiece, Dawn is the first book in the Xenogenesis trilogy, also known collectively as Lilith’s Brood. Per the biblical reference, Dawn concerns itself with main character Lilith Iyapo after she is saved from the nuclear apocalypse ravaging Earth by a mysterious alien race. With humanity nearing extermination, these aliens offer Lilith a chance at survival – one that comes at a morally dubious cost, due to the aliens’ own hidden agenda about humanity’s future.

Are you excited to see Dawn adapted by such a prolific crew? Do you have any concerns about the television series, or wish another Butler work was being made into a television series before Dawn? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Source: Shadow and Act

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