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Disney Loses ‘Legacy of Orïsha’ Series to Paramount Pictures

The famous Young Adult series Legacy of Orïsha, which includes the novels ‘Children of Blood and Bone‘ and ‘Children of Virtue and Vengence‘, will no longer be adapted under the Walt Disney Company umbrella.

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Written by Tomi Adeyemi, the series is a coming-of-age epic fantasy that follows Zélie, “a girl who has once chance to bring magic back to the world and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.”*

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The film right to the series was initially purchased in 2017 by Fox 2000 Pictures and Temple Hill Productions. After Disney acquired the majority of 21st Century Fox, the Legacy of Orïsha film was one of the few movies they kept in production.

Kathleen Kennedy presenting all of Lucasfilm's upcoming projects, including 'Children of Blood and Bone'.
‘Children of Blood and Bone’ was one of the few new IP’s included in Lucasfilm’s Investors Day panel.

Disney shuttered Fox 2000 Pictures and transferred the film over to Lucasfilm. In December 2020, Children of Blood and Bone was included in the Walt Disney Company’s Investors Day with Kathleen Kennedy confirming that Lucasfilm would co-produce the Children of Blood and Bone with 20th Century Studios.

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Sadly for Disney, they have now lost the rights to the fantasy series to Paramount. According to Deadline, Lucasfilm let the rights lapse, allowing Adeyemi and her representation to take the rights back to the market.

Tomi Adeyemi, the author of Children of Blood and Bone.
Tomi Adeyemi, the award-winning author of Children of Blood and Bone.

Deadline reports that multiple studios, including Amazon, Netflix and Universal Studios, were all involved in the bidding war until Paramount’s final offer was accepted, thanks to the incentives offered. Part of their deal includes a seven-figure screenwriting guarantee and creative approval for Adeyemi, who will also executive produce.

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The series, which takes inspiration from Yoruba and West African mythology, is being eyed as the next big franchise after Harry Potter and The Hunger Games. Children of Blood and Bone will receive an exclusive cinema release and is already in the early development stages at Paramount Pictures.

*Novel synopsis from Goodreads.

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