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Topic Studios Buys Cory Doctorow’s Sci-Fi Novella ‘Unauthorized Bread’

Canadian Blogger and Author Cory Doctorow
Britta Pedersen/Epa/REX/Shutters

Topic Studios has acquired film and TV rights to Cory Doctorow’s upcoming science-fiction novella, “Unauthorized Bread,” the first in a four-part short story series that will debut next year.

“Unauthorized Bread” is set in a near future America where the usage of everyday technology falls under the control of corporations — including all the appliances being designed to extract as much cash as possible, from the toasters that only accept “authorized bread” to the refrigerators permitting only authorized groceries.

“We’re in the grips of a long-overdue debate over whether technology will improve our lives or destroy us, but that debate has been oversimplified to the point of uselessness,” said Doctorow. “The question isn’t ‘which technology is best?’ but rather, ‘How do we make technology that serves us, rather than exploiting us?’ The answer always starts with control: if you can’t control your technology, there’s a good chance it’s being used to control you.”

Doctorow has written more than 20 novels and is professor of computer science at the United Kingdom’s Open University. He is also a special consultant to the Electronic Frontier Foundation and co-owner of the tech and culture site Boing Boing. He will serve as a creative consultant to Topic on the adaptation.

“Cory is a brilliant and outspoken writer and critic whose novels are guaranteed to make you question the deepest passions driving people — greed, love, ambition, fear,” said Lisa Leingang of Topic Studios. “We’re excited to partner with him on Unauthorized Bread to bring this sure-to-thrill series to life on screen.”

Topic produced Debra Granik’s “Leave No Trace” and is developing Oren Moverman’s dystopian adaptation of “The Good Girl,” as well as a dystopian political drama “States of America” from writer Tom King and producer Playground Entertainment; and documentaries including “XY Chelsea,” about whistleblower Chelsea Manning, which was acquired by Showtime.

Doctorow is represented by CAA and Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency.