[June 23 Update] The Original Release Date, Stephen Leeds Audiobook Series, Mistborn Screenplay Changes


[See the end of this post for the June 23 updates.]

To see this article in Spanish, you can see the translation here on cosmere.es.

Some interesting things came out of Reddit today. User u/DataLoreHD did some sleuthing and discovered a few very interesting entries on Recorded Books, Inc., with some release dates. Firstly, The Original--the audio original story written with Mary Robinette Kowal--would be released September 14th 2020, and narrated by Julia Whelan. Then, interestingly, there's a Stephen Leeds story, in the Legion series! It's Stephen Leeds: Death & Faxes, to be released September 1st, 2021. Lastly, there are two Dark One things as well. One is Dark One: Prophetic Histories coming February 9th, 2021, and the other is Dark One: Forgotten, releasing May 5th, 2021.

So this is clearly from the publisher of these audiobooks and are marked as "RB Exclusive". Brandon did recently say The Original would be out around August so I believe the September release date for that, but we've been burned by White Sand release dates before, so I'm not sure about those other dates.

But, Brandon did comment in the thread about this, and said the Stephen Leeds: Death & Faxes is an official title. He wanted to get a Stephen Leeds show made but had difficulty with it, so this audiobook series would be like a pilot to a "television show", except it's a book. He'd be overseeing the project like a show runner but not necessarily writing the individual episodes.

Brandon didn't comment on the Dark One things yet, but I suppose that seems like they'd be audio originals as well, to go with the multimedia nature of Dark One? On the recent livestream, Brandon said the Dark One stream which will be available to those who preorder it is apparently sometime this week (we don't know the day yet), so maybe we can learn more there.

Mistborn Screenplay Changes

In the last livestream, Brandon discussed the Mistborn screenplay he's working on (look about 37 minutes in). He said that Ham would now be a woman, which he's mentioned before as being a regret in Era 1. A new fact, though, is that Dockson would also be changed to a woman. Then he was thinking Mistborn would be a film, Well of Ascension would be a TV show where we can get more detail on the crew, and then Hero of Ages would be another film. 

Then, today, Brandon commented on a few more changes to Mistborn in its screenplay:

Quote

So, one thing I think I did wrong in the books was not having more allomancer guards and soldiers who were women. I don't think our same gender norms would be the case on Scadrial.

One of the revisions is this: Shan is no longer Elend's fiance, but his sister. Their father has left on business to the outer domninances, and so Shan is making a play to secure the heirship, trying to prove she is more bold and strong than her brother. This is what gives the team an opening, and why they're striking now with the heist, as in this version, House Venture maintains the city policing and has access to the atium stash.

The plan is to put a few Allomancers (including Ham) into the Venture house guard, and exploit Shan's desire to prove herself by creating chaos in the city that she'll think she needs to put down with decisive action. That will involve her pulling out the atium stash, which will in turn let the team know where to go to rob them.

It streamlines the book's story in some elegant ways to do this. Shan becomes the primary "mark" of the book, in many ways. It also lets me explain a little more succinctly what various members of the crew are doing in the background while we focus on Vin, who is to get close to Shan as a confidant--which is why she's sent to the parties. And why Shan being a brat to her isn't just annoying, it means a major part of the plan isn't yet in place.

It explains way better, in my opinion, why Shan would act against Elend. It's all clicking into place as I move pieces around. That said, I understand those who want a Television show. I could see going that way, perhaps.

Trouble is, nobody in streaming needs a big fantasy property. Anywhere I go right now, I'd be in a distant second or third place to Tolkien, WoT, Witcher, or Kingkiller. The offers I've gotten have been for a fraction of the budget of those shows--since everyone has already spent big money on their big fantasy show, and isn't really interested in another.

I'm confident feature is the place I want Mistborn; but even if I weren't, I'm not thrilled by the idea of being lost on Netflix as their "other" fantasy show.

I'm not sure who would really make two films with a TV show in between. That seems pretty optimistic. Brandon also commented that this Mistborn film would really be a sort of alternate version of the cosmere. I think that, at least, is a good decision. Adaptations will not be the same as the books, and I think they should definitely be tailored for the medium. There are of course good and bad ways to do it, but I like that Brandon is working on this screenplay.

Of course, it's important to remember this is all hypothetical and no one is attached to actually make these films.

Thanks @DataLoreHD and @Use the Falchion for their research which we used for this article.

June 23 Updates

It's been only a day and Brandon has revealed some additional details about all of this!

First, a big change to how the magic works. In the Mistborn movie atium will be usable by all Allomancers, not just Mistborn and Seers! It's something Brandon says he wishes he'd done from the start. As he (and we) has gotten further in the cosmere, using a god metal - something both powerful and rare - just in the context of Mistborn "has felt off" to him. This likely means that we'll start seeing god metals be used around the cosmere in the (distant) future; in fact, Brandon says that atium (and its alloys) would be good at resisting Shardblades - though that's not a confirmation that we'll see it used there.

This change allows him to tie some movie story arcs nicely. House Venture can now better serve its dual purpose of safeguarding the atium and controlling Luthadel, because its Allomancers can use the atium as a last resort during a rebellion. This gives Ham an additional reason to join the House guard - so she can keep an eye on Shan Elariel Venture, learn where the atium is, and steal it. Go read Brandon's post, it explains this far better than this short summary can.

And, in other news, we now know a little more about those Dark One audio productions. The TV show is still happening, and the graphic novel is (obviously) also still happening. But in addition to those, Brandon is producing a couple of audio dramasProphetic Histories is an audio novelization of his DO outline, and Forgotten is "this wacky idea I had for a "Serial" style podcast, with a journalist tracking a killer, which ties into all of this."

Edited by Chaos

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I'm genuinely intrigued by some of the changes made to Mistborn, It'll be weird that Shan isn't an Elariel, but honestly I can deal with that.

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Snorkel

Posted (edited)

Edit: Never mind, I thought the dramatised audios were new because they had a recent release date, but they're not.

Edited by Snorkel
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Sanderson has since commented on the DO stuff. 

If I'm interpreting Sanderson correctly (it was late last night and I was tired), Historic Prophecies looks like it's the graphic novel but in book form while Forgotten seems to be what the podcast idea turned into/is. 

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Lotus

Posted

I’m not sure how I feel about the changes to Shan. I liked how in the book Vin became obsessed with Elend, when she was supposed to be focused on other things.

I do approve of Ham being a woman though. He is a good character to change for that role, and I think it makes a lot of sense.

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Mage

Posted

As much as I like this whole Mistborn movie and TV show thing, I'm tempted to say that I would almost rather an Era 2 Wax and Wayne TV show. I also feel like it would attract a wider audience.

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So would these changes be considered the canonical cosmere? I really hope not. 

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15 hours ago, Elsecaller_17.5 said:

So would these changes be considered the canonical cosmere? I really hope not. 

I don't think so; it's more of an alternate universe.

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Harrycrapper

Posted

On 6/23/2020 at 7:03 AM, MysticLotus said:

I’m not sure how I feel about the changes to Shan. I liked how in the book Vin became obsessed with Elend, when she was supposed to be focused on other things.

The changes he's proposing aren't necessarily mutually exclusive with Vin pursuing Elend despite her true mission. In the proposed version she's supposed to be focusing on influencing Shan to take actions that will further the crew's plans and romancing Elend would risk alienating Shan. 

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On 6/23/2020 at 7:03 AM, MysticLotus said:

I’m not sure how I feel about the changes to Shan. I liked how in the book Vin became obsessed with Elend, when she was supposed to be focused on other things.

I do approve of Ham being a woman though. He is a good character to change for that role, and I think it makes a lot of sense.

I'm a little iffy about the whole thing, TBH. I get really attached to characters as they are. Gender changes in movies are a weird thing, to me it typically just feels like a feminism statement to satisfy those who are pushing for it. I'm not opposed, it's just seems like a cliche, and I would have a hard time accepting a cannon change like that. I like Ham as he is, he really completed the crew. A female Ham wouldn't be too bad, but it might mess up the entertaining vibe between Ham and Breeze. And Shan...well that could be okay, except the whole questionable engagement thing was a good way to show that Elend wasn't conforming to typical Nobility norms. Also changing Dockson would probably make his character feel a lot like Tia from The Reckoners...I don't know, I'm not too worried about it, but reading this post was odd.

But in the end, Sanderson did say this was like an alternate Cosmere or something. It's a little bit of a shame that we wouldn't just be getting a film version of the original Mistborn trilogy, but improvements are fine by me so long as they don't spoil the originals...?

And in any case, it's literally Brandon Sanderson. I think he'll pull out incredible in the end. (Unless the Mistborn Screenplay turns out anything like White Sand, I wasn't super impressed by that one:D) I guess I just hope it won't flop as much as the Skywalker Saga, or Artemis Fowl, or Ender's Game. I think the real reason I'm at all concerned is because of how infatuated I am with the Cosmere.:P Change is good, as long as it's good. And I think I trust that Sanderson will make it great, like he nearly always does.

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Chiberty

Posted

43 minutes ago, Dawnbearer said:

Unless the Mistborn Screenplay turns out anything like White Sand, I wasn't super impressed by that one:D

Have you read the prose version? It's a whole lot better. Definitely better than the GN.

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8 hours ago, Dawnbearer said:

I'm a little iffy about the whole thing, TBH. I get really attached to characters as they are. Gender changes in movies are a weird thing, to me it typically just feels like a feminism statement to satisfy those who are pushing for it. I'm not opposed, it's just seems like a cliche, and I would have a hard time accepting a cannon change like that. I like Ham as he is, he really completed the crew. A female Ham wouldn't be too bad, but it might mess up the entertaining vibe between Ham and Breeze. And Shan...well that could be okay, except the whole questionable engagement thing was a good way to show that Elend wasn't conforming to typical Nobility norms. Also changing Dockson would probably make his character feel a lot like Tia from The Reckoners...I don't know, I'm not too worried about it, but reading this post was odd.

But in the end, Sanderson did say this was like an alternate Cosmere or something. It's a little bit of a shame that we wouldn't just be getting a film version of the original Mistborn trilogy, but improvements are fine by me so long as they don't spoil the originals...?

And in any case, it's literally Brandon Sanderson. I think he'll pull out incredible in the end. (Unless the Mistborn Screenplay turns out anything like White Sand, I wasn't super impressed by that one:D) I guess I just hope it won't flop as much as the Skywalker Saga, or Artemis Fowl, or Ender's Game. I think the real reason I'm at all concerned is because of how infatuated I am with the Cosmere.:P Change is good, as long as it's good. And I think I trust that Sanderson will make it great, like he nearly always does.

I will say that Brandon has long regretted not making Ham a woman. I think it'll be okay and he'll keep the essence of those characters. 

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20 hours ago, ChickenLiberty said:

Have you read the prose version? It's a whole lot better. Definitely better than the GN.

No actually, I've only read what my local library had (digitally, but still). I think it had potential, but the way the GN worked out was underwhelming. So yeah, I can see that being better, I'll check it out, thanks!

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