Lives Of The Mayfair Witches TV Series Officially Moving Forward At AMC

Start brushing up on your New Orleans history and start shopping for turtlenecks to hide your pretty neck, because 2022 is going to be the year we get a full-blown Anne Rice television universe, courtesy of AMC. According to Deadline, the network has greenlit a series order for "The Lives of the Mayfair Witches," based on the Rice trilogy of the same name. While Variety reported that AMC had bought the rights to both the Mayfair Witches books and Rice's " The Vampire Chronicles," only the latter series had been approved for production. Now the story of Rice's haunted witch family is set to hit the small screen alongside its vampire sibling series, and hopefully set up some fun franchise crossovers somewhere down the line. 

The "Mayfair Witches" books follow a young neurosurgeon from San Francisco named Rowan Mayfair who discovers that she is the heir to a family of witches. It turns out that she inherited more than their sprawling New Orleans estate, however, when she manifests powers and starts being tailed by a mysterious ghostly figure. She soon discovers that her family has some twisted secrets, and that the demonic being following her, Lasher, wants to use her own naiveté against her to gain untold power in the human world. The books are notoriously scandalous, with incest and a lot of sexual assault, so it will be interesting to see how AMC adapts some of the more problematic elements.

The Anne Rice Extended Universe

The series was given a writer's room in August 2021, with the hopes that whatever the writers came up with could go straight to a series order. That ended up being the case here, and "The Lives of the Mayfair Witches" received an eight-episode order for its first season. The series is the second in what's looking to become an Anne Rice extended universe, as the "Vampire Chronicles" series was greenlit in June 2021 and had cast its protagonist, the vampire Lestat, by August. 

The series is written by Esta Spalding and Michelle Ashford, best known for their work on the Showtime period drama "Masters of Sex." Spalding will serve as showrunner on the series as a part of her overall deal with AMC studios. 

Spalding and Ashford shared their excitement with Deadline, explaining their attachment to the franchise:

"The world of witches has fascinated and terrified for centuries, and yet Anne Rice's particular lens on witches explored something new altogether – women who are powerful, and often brutal, and always committed to subverting our current power structures. We are so excited to join our partners AMC and Gran Via Productions in making this mysterious and provocative world come to life."

The women of Rice's world are indeed fierce creatures, whether they're witches, vampires, or simple humans caught up in supernatural nonsense. Hopefully the series will do well enough for an adaptation of Rice's seventh "Vampire Chronicles" book, "Merrick," which follows a forgotten daughter of the Mayfair witches who falls in love with the eternal vampiric sad boy, Louis de Pointe du Lac. Louis is the narrator of "Interview with the Vampire" and is played by Brad Pitt in the 1994 movie adaptation. Their romance is truly one of star-crossed lovers, destined for tragedy.

"The Vampire Chronicles" is set to debut sometime in late 2022, with plans for "The Lives of the Mayfair Witches" to follow shortly thereafter.