Robert Kirkman has had massive success with AMC’s adaptation of “The Walking Dead,” and now he looks to be aiming for the big screen in a major way: The Hollywood Reporter has word that Kirkman’s Skybound Entertainment, his division of Image Comics, has reached a two-year first-look film deal with Universal Studios.
“In high school I watched ‘Army of Darkness’ pretty much every night before bed so I’ve seen that Universal logo steering around the planet we call home about a thousand times,” Kirkman said in the announcement on THR. “The idea of producing movies that will bear that logo is just unbelievably awesome. We couldn’t find better partners than the team at Universal. I believe this partnership is going to help David [Alpert, Kirkman’s longtime business partner] and I achieve all the goals we set out to accomplish when we founded Skybound five years ago.”
Skybound encompasses not only creations from Kirkman and his artistic collaborators like “The Walking Dead,” “Invincible” and “Outcast,” but also works from outside creators including “Birthright” by Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, “Ghosted” by Williamson and Goran Sudžuka & Davide Gianfelice, and “Manifest Destiny” by Chris Dingess and Matthew Roberts.
No specific plans are yet clear from the Universal deal, though the THR report does mention there are currently no plans for a “Walking Dead” feature film.
“Robert and David have proven themselves to be incredible storytellers in a wide range of mediums, and we are thrilled to be Skybound’s partner in the feature realm,” Universal’s Co-Presidents of Production Peter Cramer and Jeffrey Kirschenbaum said in a joint statement. “We feel confident that their wealth of ideas and expertise will lead to exciting, provocative films for our slate.”
Even before today’s news, Kirkman had a busy slate in Hollywood — “The Walking Dead” just wrapped another hit season, with its sixth on the way; spinoff “Fear The Walking Dead” has already been renewed for a second season before actually airing; “Outcast” is in production at Cinemax; and Kirkman’s first foray into film, “Air” — which he produced and stars “Walking Dead” vet Norman Reedus — is scheduled for release in August.