John Wick's Writer Will Next Tackle the Fantasy Series A Darker Shade of Magic

A crop of the cover for A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab.
A crop of the cover for A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab.
Image: MacMillian

After creating his own wild world of assassins and gunfights, Derek Kolstad will next adapt another writer’s magical multiverse.


Variety reports that Kolstad, who wrote the first three John Wick movies, has been hired to adapt A Darker Shade of Magic, a fantasy adventure by V.E. Schwab. Neal Moritz (The Fast and the Furious) and Gerard Butler (yes, that Gerard Butler) are among the producers attached and the film is set up at Sony.

Schwab’s novel tells the story of a universe that’s split into four dimensions, each one with a unique view on magic. In one world, everyone believes magic doesn’t exist. In another, magic is part of everyone’s life. In a third, the people in power use it against the weak, and a fourth world has been forever destroyed because of magic. In this setting, one of the last people with an ability to travel across these dimensions finds themselves in a position to save them all.

There are three total novels in the series, which were published between 2015 and 2017, so it’s very possible that the powers that be are hoping for a potential franchise. And Kolstad has certainly shown a penchant for building a fascinating world with cool characters that can sustain that kind of storytelling. We’ll see how his early drafts turn out, if they attract a director, and move ahead from there.

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Entertainment Reporter for io9/Gizmodo. Formerly of Premiere, EW, Us Weekly, and Slashfilm. AP Award-Winning Film Critic and CCA member. Loves Star Wars, posters, Legos, and often all three at once.



To be honest, I checked out around book 2. (Yet another tournament arc...)