Gossamer: Everything We Know So Far

Lois Lowry's Newberry Medal-winning dystopian novel "The Giver" has been required reading in elementary school for many people since it was published in 1993 (myself included). Of course, Lowry's body of writing extends well beyond that, with books dating back to the late 1970s and works that include her other Newberry Medal-winner, the 1990 WWII Holocaust novel "Number the Stars." She's also written decidedly more light-hearted and quirky titles like the "Anastasia" and "Gooney Bird" books. Both of those center on young girls whose problems are, thankfully, neither matters of life or death nor concern them being denied the right to basic human autonomy.

Where the 2014 film version of "The Giver" was one of many dystopian YA novels-turned movies that flooded theaters in the 2010s hoping (and failing) to become the next "Hunger Games," the 2020 film adaptation of Lowry's 2008 book "The Willoughbys" marked the second critical triumph for Netflix Animation after the Oscar-nominated "Klaus." Now, another one of Lowry's novels, 2006's "Gossamer," is also getting an animated makeover, this time in the form of a TV series.

When and where to watch Gossamer

The "Gossamer" TV show will span eight half-hour episodes, with BRON Media's virtual production and service company, BRON Digital, producing the animation. BRON Media was also behind the animated film version of "The Willoughbys," along with other Netflix Original movies like the 2019 Chris Evans thriller "The Red Sea Diving Resort" and the 2020 drama "Pieces of a Woman" (which Netflix picked up after its run on the festival circuit).

Given BRON Media's past with the streaming service, Netflix seems as likely a place as any for "Gossamer" to stream right now (with 2023 being the earliest potential release date). There's also the matter of Netflix itself, which has been canceling in-house animated projects left and right of late in response to its plummeting stock prices. If anything, that presumably means the company is on the lookout for more animated films or series from outside parties like BRON, increasing the odds of them teaming up here.

What Gossamer will be about

Variety has published a semi-official synopsis for "Gossamer," reading:

The show centers on Littlest One, who is an in-training Gossamer, a fairy who is a dream giver. Each night she and her teacher, Bertrand, visit Vera, a human selected for dream receiving. For a Gossamer, part of dream giving is also gathering "fragments," which are memories that lie within important objects in a Gossamer's human counterpart. Once gathered, these fragments are used to make fantastical dreams. When Vera takes in Frankie, a foster child with a troubled and complex past, Littlest One is poised to help Frankie find happiness through her dreams, but her spontaneous and sometimes reckless approach to dream-weaving opens up a darkness within Frankie.

Even without having read "Gossamer," one can see the parallels between "Gossamer" and Lois Lowry's other work, most notably "The Giver." As different as they are overall, both stories examine the complicated nature of human emotions through fantastical stories involving the transference of memories and teacher-student relationships. Despite having a cast led by heavyweight character actors like Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep, most critics agreed the film version of "The Giver" wasn't able to do justice to the concepts and themes in Lowry's original novel. Hopefully, with more time to dive into its source material's ideas, "Gossamer" will succeed where that Lowry adaptation did not.

What we know about the Gossamer cast and crew

The "Gossamer" voice cast includes "Jojo Rabbit" and "Last Night in Soho" actor Thomasin McKenzie, reuniting her with BRON Media after the company produced her and director Debra Granik's 2018 drama "Leave No Trace" (which you should check out ASAP if you haven't already). Other cast members include Oscar-winner Forest Whitaker (seen recently in "Godfather of Harlem"), "The Conjuring" veteran Vera Farmiga, and Richard E. Grant ("Can You Ever Forgive Me?," "Loki"), as well as Wilmer Valderrama, Alanna Masterson, and Courtney Rosemont.

Behind the camera, Azazel Jacobs ("Mozart in the Jungle," "French Exit") and Heidi Bivens are directing "Gossamer," with Crystal Meers handling the writing. Grammy-winning musical artist Timbaland and Gary Marella are serving as executive music supervisors on the show and will also provide music for "Gossamer." Lastly, Bron Studios founders Aaron L. Gilbert and Brenda Gilbert are joining Ashley Levinson and Kevin Turen as executive producers on the TV series.