Amazon Studios has inked an overall deal with The Walking Dead’s Robert Kirkman.
The creator of the zombie smash hit, who co-founded production company Skybound Entertainment with longtime collaborator David Alpert, has signed a deal with Amazon Studios to develop projects for Amazon Prime Video.
First and foremost a comic creator, Kirkman has seen groundbreaking success in the adaptation of his comic book titles into major franchises, from AMC’s TV series of The Walking Dead, the highest-rated basic cable drama of all time, to companion series Fear the Walking Dead and the pre-apocalyptic drama, Five Year, which is being developed for multiple territories including Germany, India, Brazil, and Italy. Kirkman’s popular demonic-exorcism comic, Outcast, has also been adapted, produced and airs on Cinemax, while his long-running Invincible series is being adapted for the big screen by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg for Universal Pictures.
The agreement also includes a first-look deal with Skybound, which has produced other programmes, such as Fear the Walking Dead and Outcast.
Skybound Entertainment, a multi-platform entertainment company, has also moved into the digital content space, producing the first-ever narrative VR series, GONE, for Samsung’s Milk VR platform. In 2017, it will produce VR horror series Lies Within, which is the first project out of Skybound’s partnership with interactive theatrical company Delusion. The company currently has a number of different film projects in development including properties for their two-year first look deal with Universal. Skybound Entertainment’s interactive division, meanwhile, works with partners including Telltale’s The Walking Dead, Free Range Games’ Labyrinth, Night School Studios’ Oxenfree, Pipeworks’ Superfight, and Overkill’s The Walking Dead. Skybound also creates a wide range of merchandise, including tabletop card games Superfight and Red Flags, apparel, board games, and action figures.
In short, they bring a lot of options to Amazon’s production table. Indeed, this collaboration comes on the heels of Amazon Studios’ concerted push into science fiction, fantasy and horror programming, with Victorian fantasy show Carnival Row commissioned this year, based on a script from Pacific Rim’s Travis Beacham.
Skybound Entertainment’s co-presidents of film and television, Bryan and Sean Furst, will oversee the Amazon project slate in conjunction with Kirkman and Alpert.
“Robert is a gifted storyteller who shares our passion for elevated genre storytelling that pushes boundaries,” says Sharon Tal Yguado, Head of Event Series, Amazon Studios. “Robert and the team at Skybound are some of the most innovative and fearless creatives in the business. Together, we plan to explore immersive worlds and bold ideas for Prime Video.”
“At Skybound Entertainment we strive to tell the best stories in the most unique and creative ways in an effort to always break new ground,” adds Kirkman. “A forward thinking company like Amazon is the perfect home for us. Their new foray into genre fiction has us at peak optimism for what can be accomplished during this unprecedented partnership. Sharon Tal Yguado has been an instrumental force in the success of Walking Dead and Outcast from day one. Being able to not only continue that relationship, but also expand it into new territory with the vast resources of Amazon, means great things are ahead for myself, David Alpert, Skybound and fans of awesome entertainment. Look out world, here we come!”