Elizabeth Banks has managed to do a lot of great things so far in her career and taken a number of chances, and with her recent directorial debut with Pitch Perfect 2, where she was also a producer, bringing in some major money ($29 million budget, $250 million worldwide take), it’s no surprise that Universal Pictures is willing to take a new chance on her. Banks is looking to go big and ambitious with her second film by adapting Victoria Aveyard’s novel from February of this year with Red Queen. It’s something that you can see shades of other projects in to be sure, but it also looks like it could take on a different feel with Banks behind the project, bringing a different sensibility to an epic like this from a woman’s point of view rather than a man’s. With a lot of first time female director’s getting poorly treated with their second gigs, even when overperforming, it’s good to see that we might be starting to see a trend change.
The project has a script from Gennifer Hutchison already, and considering her work in Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, it looks like this might shape up really well if it comes together.
Novel concept: Graceling meets The Selection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard’s sweeping tale of seventeen-year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous intrigue of the king’s palace. Will her power save her or condemn her?
Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood–those with common, Red blood serve the Silver- blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.
To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard–a growing Red rebellion–even as her heart tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays, the only certainty is betrayal.