NK Jemisin Will Adapt The Broken Earth Trilogy For The Big Screen
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NK Jemisin Will Adapt Her Award-Winning Broken Earth Trilogy For The Big Screen

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BY June 11, 2021

Author NK Jemisin is many things: a writer, an author, a teacher, a MacArthur Genius. She is a breaker of barriers, and a setter of records after each book in her Broken Earth Trilogy won the Hugo Award for best novel three years in a row. Now it looks like Jemisin will add screenwriter and producer to her list of accomplishments. News broke this week that The Broken Earth Trilogy by NK Jemisin will become a feature film (or possibly a trilogy of films). Jemisin herself will adapt The Broken Earth Trilogy for the big screen.

NK Jemisin Will Adapt The Broken Earth Trilogy Into Feature Film(s)

TriStar pictures emerged victorious from a hot bidding war over the rights to The Broken Earth Trilogy. Deadline reports that this was a seven-figure deal with Sony Pictures. The author shared the good news on her own Twitter page, with emphasis on the fact that she will be adapting the books herself.

This is not the first time that The Broken Earth Trilogy has been optioned either. Back in 2017 there were reports that TNT would be turning the books into a television series. But it looks like that deal fell through, which might be a blessing in disguise for fans of the series. With Jemisin herself adapting the books for screen, this might spur a new wave of authors who become screenwriters on their own adaptations. There Jemisin goes again, breaking down barriers and setting a new precedent for others to follow.

Of course this is not the only series by NK Jemisin that has an adaptation in the works. Back in March, we covered how her Inheritance Trilogy has also been optioned for TV adaptation. No word yet on what network might be picking up that series, however.

An Award-Winning Genre-Bender Of A Series

Top 10 Fantasy Series of the past Decade Image via Hachette Books

The Broken Earth Trilogy is an ambitious genre-bending series that contains elements of both science-fiction and fantasy. It is also a dystopian future series, where great cataclysmic events disrupt life on the continent called The Stillness. Each time one of these natural disasters occur, it launches a new ‘season’ in the world history. The first book in the trilogy is titled The Fifth Season and dives into one of these cataclysmic events, and how it affects the magic users of the land known as the Orogene. These magic users are hated and feared, with the ability to control the earth and other natural forces. They are also the only hope that humanity has for a solution, and salvation.

The series primarily follows a woman named Essun. When the titular Fifth Season arrives, Essun is separated from her daughter. And spends much of the series trying to get her back. Along the way we see Essun’s life through memories and flashbacks. Jemisin delves into all of the identities Essun has had over the years leading up to this moment. Over the course of the trilogy, we learn about her abilities as an Orogene, and begin to understand how she might be the key to healing the broken Earth.

The Broken Earth Comes To The Big Screen

The visual aesthetic of the series should translate beautifully to screen. I am most excited to see the giant crystals floating around in the sky like clouds. I’m also very interested to see how some of the races will appear on-screen like the magical Stone Eaters. Of course the biggest question right now is who will play Essun in the film(s).

We will of course be keeping an eye on this project as it develops, with NK Jemisin working to adapt her Broken Earth Trilogy for the big screen. We eagerly await some casting news to see who will play the role of Essun. Stay up to date on the latest news by following Comic Years on Facebook and Twitter today!

(Featured image via MasterClass)


Emily O'Donnell is a writer and photographer with roots in some of the earliest online fandoms. She cut her genre teeth on the Wizard of Oz books at the tender age of 6 years old, and was reading epic adult fantasy novels by the age of 10. Decades later, she still consumes genre fiction like there is no tomorrow. She is delighted to be living through the golden age of sci-fi and fantasy popularity. She is unashamed of the amount of fanfiction that still lingers online under her name.

Adaptation NewsAdaptationsBlack AuthorsFemale AuthorsMovie NewsNK JemisinThe Broken Earth Trilogy

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