Last Updated on August 2, 2023
Joe Abercrombie has etched his name deeply into the annals of fantasy fans – particularly those of a more grimdark persuasion. As SFF becomes more and more popular, with TV and film studios rushing to find the next Game of Thrones, Abercrombie and his books are frequently put forward by fans as excellent candidates for adaptation.
Their wishes were answered earlier this year, after it was announced that a movie is in the works based on Best Served Cold, an Abercrombie novel set in his hugely popular First Law World. Detail is scant on the adaptation at this stage but what we do know is filling fans with excitement.
And don’t just take my word for it. Rebecca Ferguson, the only member of the cast currently announced, says she is ‘very, very excited’ about what’s to come – something that bodes well for Abercrombie’s legions of fans.
She told Collider last month: “We were just talking about casting and who we want around. I’m very, very excited.
“We’ll see now with strikes and everything that’s happening, but everything will happen in its own time.”
So what do we know about the most anticipated fantasy adaptation of the year?
What is Best Served Cold?
Set in the First Law World but outside the beloved main trilogy, Best Served Cold follows Monza Murcatto, an infamous mercenary.
It tells the story of Monza as she tries to get revenge on seven people who killed her brother before leaving her for dead.
We see her get a crew together, with some familiar faces from Abercrombie’s other books. You won’t need to have read anything else to enjoy Best Served Cold, however.
Who’s the director/writer?
Best Served Cold will be directed by Tim Miller for Skydance.
Miller has a rich body of work and made his feature-film debut with Deadpool, something that certainly shares similarities in tone with Abercrombie’s work. If he is given the greenlight to go all out, then grimdark fans could be in for a treat.
More recently, he is the man behind the popular and award-winning Love, Death & Robots series. Though animated, the series has been praised for its combination of comedy, horror, sci-fi and fantasy.
Excited yet, grimdark fans? Well, the writer of the screenplay is one Joe Abercrombie himself.
Announcing the news on Twitter, he lavished Miller with praise and explained: “We’ve been working to bring the First Law to the screen in one form or another for a decade now, and there is no bigger fan of, or champion for, these books.”
Who’s in the cast?
So far, only Ferguson has been announced and she will play the main role of Monza.
It marks the latest SFF role for Ferguson, who starred in Dune and is currently thrilling audiences with her performances in Apple TV series and sci-fi adaptation Silo.
In an interview last month, she suggest that discussions were underway to fill the other roles.
What do fans think?
Unsurprisingly, fans and the publishing community are thrilled by the news – particularly with the fact that Abercrombie will be heavily involved in the movie.
Responding on Twitter, one fan said:
Best Served Cold is my favorite of the three standalones. Ferguson looks like an amazing fit for Monza. Really looking forward to this one!
— Zaronion (@Zaronion) May 30, 2023
A second wrote:
The lead from Love, Death, and Robots is going to be the lead for BSC‽ This is the best news I’ve heard all week!!!
— Colin Gardner (@CGardner_2) June 22, 2023
While Scott Lynch, author of The Lies of Locke Lamora, said:
Look, man. We need to have a heart-to-heart about this. It’s time somebody sat you down and told you the truth, straight to your face, no sugarcoating. Here it is:
That’s fucking rad, Joe. Woohoo!
— Scott Lynch (@scottlynch78) May 30, 2023
and Cameron Johnston, author of The Maleficent Seven said:
That is so damn cool! 🙂
— Cameron Johnston (@CamJohnston) May 30, 2023
And when will it be released?
Ah. After a pretty exciting ride so far, I’m sad to report we’re still pretty far away from the moment you can sit in the cinema with your overpriced popcorn in your lap as Ferguson enthralls you with her Monza.
Production is reportedly a while away and with only one cast member being announced, there is a lot of work to be done before the cameras start rolling.
And as Ferguson herself alluded to, there’s no way to predict how the writer’s strike will affect things.
Still, news of the First Law making it to the big screen is extremely exciting. It’ll all be worth it in the end!
Stay tuned to Grimdark Magazine for updates in the coming months.