While we’re waiting for the daily cast to find out whether Ancillary Justice becomes a television series, videomaker bironic has created a dynamic fan trailer that does a fantastic job of envisioning Ann Leckie’s novel. And considering the source material—with incredibly detailed worldbuilding and narrated by a former ship AI—that’s a huge achievement.
We shouldn’t have been surprised, seeing as bironic is the brilliant mind behind office favorite video “Starships,” which unbelievably succeeds in setting all manner of science fiction footage to a Nicki Minaj summertime hit. She brings those same skills to bear with this fan trailer, which combines footage from properties you know (Doctor Who, The Expanse, Stargate, Interstellar) and plenty you don’t. In fact, bironic made a point of tracking down footage of non-white characters in sci-fi settings that were not big names or easily identifiable. She describes the process:
A labor of love, nine months in the making. I watched or scanned through about 50 movies and TV shows (plus endless YouTube videos) in the hunt for clips that looked like my headcanon of critical moments, places and characters from the books, while trying not to use hugely recognizable actors and actresses. Not that you’d know it from the final source list, but the research process involved reading and learning a lot about the history of black characters in Western science fiction film and television as well as a crash course in modern African SF/F independent filmmaking, both of which were fascinating.
While the haunting female singing (a must, considering Justice of Toren‘s love of songs) and drums immediately bring to mind Battlestar Galactica, they were sourced from elsewhere. Furthermore, bits like the gloves-off shot (which seemed to be one of the biggest “yesss” moments with readers of the series) were taken from unexpected places, like No Lovers Left Alive. My personal favorite is—well, without giving it away, a certain jump/fall.
Spoilers if you haven’t read Ancillary Justice:
Leckie herself praised the trailer, saying, “This trailer is assembled from a bunch of different sources, none of which was any sort of adaptation of any of the Ancillary books, and yet. And yet! Look at that. Look how awesome that is!”