FX has ordered its pilot adaptation of Octavia E. Butler’s acclaimed novel Kindred to series.
Based on MacArthur Fellow and Hugo Award winner Butler’s 1979 novel, the eight-episode series 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.”
The cast also includes Micah Stock (The Right Stuff), Ryan Kwanten (The Oath), Gayle Rankin (GLOW), Austin Smith (Random Acts of Flyness), Antoinette Crowe-Legacy (Godfather of Harlem) and child actor David Alexander Kaplan (Creepshow).
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins (Watchmen) will serve as showrunner and writer on the FX Productions series, and executive produce along with The Americans‘ Joe Weisberg and Joel Fields, Courtney Lee-Mitchell, Darren Aronofsky, Ari Handel, Ernestine Walker and Merrilee Heifetz.
“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,” FX original programming chief Nick Grad said in a statement. “The pilot directed by Janicza Bravo is brilliant and we can’t wait to resume production with this incredibly talented and dedicated cast.”