Annapurna Television, the TV division of Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures, has acquired Victor LaValle’s new novel The Changeling to develop as a television series. The book, described as a mix of horror, fantasy and realism, was published on June 13 by Spiegel & Grau.
In The Challenging, when Apollo and Emma have their baby, Brian, it feels like both a reward and a challenge for the new dad. Apollo, the son of a single mother, had been scraping by as a bookseller who hunts estate and garage sales for rare first editions, so even the unusual circumstance of Brian’s birth (on a stalled subway train) seems like a blessing, as does the way Apollo stumbles across a first edition of To Kill a Mockingbird (inscribed by Harper Lee to Truman Capote, no less) shortly thereafter. But after some young-parent squabbles and inexplicable images on their smartphones foreshadow trouble, the story turns nightmarish: Apollo finds himself tied up and beaten by Emma, then forced to listen to the sounds of Brian’s murder.
Sue Naegle, who heads Annapurna Television, and Ali Krug will oversee development for the company. LaValle will serve as a co-executive producer on the series.
LaValle also is the author of short-story collection Slapboxing with Jesus; novels The Ecstatic, Big Machine, The Devil in Silver; and novellas Lucretia and the Kroons and The Ballad of Black Tom, which he is currently adapting as series for AMC. He has received the Whiting Writers Award, United States Artists Ford Fellowship, Guggenheim Fellowship, Shirley Jackson Award and American Book Award, among others.
Annapurna Television just got a greenlight from Netflix for the Coen brothers Western anthology series The Ballad of Buster Scruggs and also has limited series adaptation of Maria Semple’s bestselling novel Today Will Be Different, toplined and produced by Julia Roberts, in development at HBO.
LaValle is repped by CAA and Watkins/Loomis Agency.