Gennifer Hutchinson has won plenty of attention and acclaim as one of Breaking Bad's writers. But with the widely lauded show wrapped, this WGA Award-winner is looking to branch out into film. Variety reports Hutchinson has been hired to by Universal Pictures adapt the upcoming young adult novel The Red Queen into a thrilling fantasy actioner.
The book is the first of a trilogy penned by Victoria Aveyard. While it's not expected to hit bookshelves for over a year, it is already set to be published in 16 different languages including English, Turkish, Russian, Korean, German and French. All this means Universal could have a major hit on their hands if The Red Queen takes off the way publishers seem to anticipate it will.
Here's the book's synopsis:
The Red Queen is set in a fantasy world where society is divided by the color of blood. It features a 17-year-old who, to save her family, must assume the role of a long-lost princess while secretly aiding a revolution.
Aveyard is pretty new to the world of YA writing, but the continued success of The Hunger Games franchise is clearly keeping up studios appetites for the YA genre, even despite a smattering of flops. According to Aveyard's personal blog, Universal snatched up The Red Queen's movie rights just two weeks after Harper Teen offered her a publishing deal. In a charming post about her self-proclaimed incredible good luck, Aveyard explains her gratitude for the book deal, the movie deal, and especially one involving Universal, saying, "The Universal globe logo is one of my first memories, because I was a child raised by the screen, and E.T. and Jurassic Park were some of my very strange parents."
But how did The Red Queen come about? Aveyard shared that back in May, writing:
" A year ago, I had just graduated USC with a BFA in Screenwriting. I wanted (and still want) to be David Koepp. I wanted to write blockbuster, popcorn, gotta-see-it-at-midnight movies. And for some reason, a television pilot I wrote landed me a general meeting at Benderspink. (LUCK). After I pitched another TV pilot and a dumb movie idea, I heard luck whispering in my ear. Screw it. Pitch what you've been thinking about. So I told them I wanted to write the next big YA novel. I knew it was cocky to say, but that's what I wanted and I was mid-meeting, so I was firing on all cylinders. Turns out, Benderspink had just sold the rights to Dan Krokos' The Planet Thieves, so books were on the brain. I pitched writing a YA novel to them at exactly the right time."
With The Red Queen novel not expected to hit until the winter of 2015, it's unlikely Universal will be in a rush to make this movie happen. However, hiring Hutchinson is a good sign that they are taking the project's development seriously. Plus it seems like good news for a great writer (Hutchinson), and continued luck for an up and coming one (Aveyard). High fives all around.