It would appear that the next The Handmaid’s Tale is on its way: Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy will be the next work from the acclaimed speculative fiction author to receive a TV series adaptation. Paramount Television and Anonymous Content won a bidding war for the rights to adapt the trilogy for television, per Variety.
Publisher Penguin Random House sums up the sweeping dystopian trilogy—made up of Oryx and Crake (2003), The Year of the Flood (2009) and Maddaddam (2013)—as follows:
In Oryx and Crake, a man struggles to survive in a world where he may be the last human. In search of answers, he embarks on a journey through the lush wilderness that was so recently a great city, until powerful corporations took mankind on an uncontrolled genetic engineering ride. In The Year of the Flood the long-feared waterless flood has occurred, altering Earth as we know it and obliterating most human life. And in Maddaddam a small group of survivors band together with the Children of Crake: the gentle, bioengineered quasi-human species who will inherit this new earth.
The trilogy’s adaptation, ostensibly titled MaddAddam, will be executive produced by David Kanter and Bard Dorros of Anonymous Content, along with Angus Wall, Linda Carlson and Kent Kubena of Rock Paper Scissors Entertainment—Rock Paper Scissors recently entered into a first-look deal with Paramount TV and Anonymous Content for both scripted and unscripted content.
“I am very happy with the vision described to me by Angus, Kent, David, Bard and Amy, as well as the stunning visual presentation they put together,” Atwood said. “I very much look forward to working with them.”
“Margaret Atwood’s unique and singular literary voice speaks to the greater issues facing our current climate and resonates with fans worldwide; the MaddAddam Trilogy is no exception,” said Amy Powell, president of Paramount TV. “These stories are perfectly suited for portrayal on television and we are thrilled to once again bring a literary masterpiece to life with our partners at Anonymous Content, Angus Wall and Rock Paper Scissors Entertainment.”
Hulu’s adaptation of Atwood’s 1985 novel The Handmaid’s Tale launched last April, and has since become the streamer’s most acclaimed original series yet. The series won eight Emmy awards in the fall, including outstanding drama series, outstanding lead actress in a drama series (Elisabeth Moss), outstanding writing for a drama series (Bruce Miller), outstanding supporting actress in a drama series (Ann Dowd) and outstanding directing for a drama series (Reed Morano). The CBC’s miniseries adaptation of Atwood’s Alias Grace premiered on Netflix last November—Paste TV editor Matt Brennan called the miniseries “a tightly constructed marvel.”
Paramount TV and Anonymous Content have combined forces for a number of book-to-series adaptations now, most notably including a George Clooney-starring Hulu limited series based on Joseph Heller’s Catch-22. The banners are also behind Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why and TNT’s new period thriller The Alienist, among others.
At one point, mother! director Darren Aronofsky had been linked to a MaddAddam project in development at HBO, but that project fizzled out in 2016. Aronofsky is not involved with Paramount Television and Anonymous Content’s adaptation.
MaddAddam is currently without a cast, creative team or any kind of production timeline.