Chris VanDusen is tackling another popular book adaptation project, it seems. Per Deadline, Dusen has signed on to co-write and executive produces a television adaptation of the New York Times bestseller They Both Die at the End. The project is helmed by Entertainment One, a multimedia company that has been overseeing the series for the past ten months. According to reports, the adaptation will be brought to the premium marketplace for broadcast and/or streaming rights in the coming months.
They Both Die at the End is a 2017 young adult novel by Adam Silvera. Set in the near future, the novel follows teenagers Mateo and Rufus — two complete strangers — who have both received calls from Death-Cast, a company that is able to predict the death of individuals. With only twenty-four hours to live, the two boys manage to find each other and dedicate their final hours to truly living. Overcoming their traumas, fake skydiving, and saying their goodbyes are just some of the things the boys encounter in this contemplative, heart-wrenching novel. The book made history as the first young adult novel to feature a queer Latinx lead to reach No. 1 on the New York Times Bestseller list.
This isn’t the novel’s first go at adaptation. In February 2019, it was announced that HBO had picked up They Both Die at the End for a half-hour miniseries. Chris Kelly was set to direct with JJ Abrams and ben stephenson attached as executive producers. However, for undisclosed reasons, this project was quietly abandoned, with all previously announced developers seeking out other ventures. Entertainment One acquired the rights to Silvera’s novel last spring following the abandoned miniseries. Dusen will pen the pilot script alongside Silvera.
They Both Die at the End is one of the first few projects Dusen is following his departure from the hit Netflix series Bridgerton. Dusen acted as the show’s creator and showrunner for its first two seasons but has elected to pursue other interests. Jess Brownwell is set to replace Dusen for the show’s already confirmed third and fourth seasons. Dusen is also known for his work on other Shondaland shows, including medical drama Grey’s Anatomyits spinoff Private practiceand political thrillers scandal.
Ace They Both Die at the End hits the market, it is likely the book will see another resurgence as it did in 2021 when it gained surprise popularity across social media. Silvera has also announced a prequel novel focusing on the rise of Death-Cast and a new set of star-crossed lovers. The book, titled The First to Die at the End, is set to release on October 4, 2022.
The film will be the sixth screen adaptation of Green’s work.
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