There are so many comic book media projects in the works that sometimes, it’s easy to forget one, especially when it isn’t a superhero project. Thus you may have forgotten that a film based on Joe Kelly and Ken Niimura’s has actually been filmed with real stars – Zoe Saldana, Imogen Poots, Madison Wolfe – by a real director – Academy Award winner Anders Walters – and premiered at the Toronto Film Festival to acclaim.
The film has just been acquired by RLJE Films which will distribute it sometime in 2018. “We’re thrilled to acquire an amazing film that was so well received at the Toronto International Film Festival,” said RLJ Entertainment’s Chief Acquisitions Officer, Mark Ward in a statement “With the film’s talented, veteran filmmakers and an amazing cast led by Madison Wolfe and Zoe Saldana, we couldn’t be happier to share this beautiful film with audiences at large.”
This being an indie production there are dozens of producers and distributors, all of which you can read in the below PR, but the important fact is that Kelly wrote the screenplay based on his well reviewed graphic novel, which is about a teen girl (played by Wolfe) who escapes from her humdrum life and troubles by imagining her own fantasy world. The film follows her struggles to face real life with the same heroism she shows in the fantasy realm. In other words, a classic comics coming of age fantasy meets reality story.
The comic featured lovely art by Niimura, a few pages of which are seen below. Writing of the films screening in Toronto, The Verge wrote:
But more than that, I Kill Giants is about loneliness and how hard it can be to face our fears, let alone to let other people in on those fears. Barbara takes on her solitary task with the ferocity of any hero saving the world because no one else seems to be doing it, but she also tries to let other people into her life. It’s telling, and tragic, that she seems to be most balanced and confident when she’s keeping everyone at arm’s length. Only opening up seems to leave her vulnerable, frightened, and uncertain.
And here’s a clip:
RLJE Films, a brand of RLJ Entertainment (NASDAQ: RLJE), Umedia and XYZ Films announced today that RLJE has acquired the U.S. rights to the highly anticipated I Kill Giants, which premiered at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival to critical praise. Based on the acclaimed Man of Action graphic novel by Joe Kelly and Ken Niimura with a screenplay by Joe Kelly, the film was directed by Anders Walter, the Academy Award winning writer/director for the short Helium, and stars Zoe Saldana (Guardians of the Galaxy franchise), Imogen Poots (Need for Speed, That Awkward Moment), and Madison Wolfe (The Conjuring 2). XYZ Films is handling worldwide rights on the film, which was backed by Ingenious and financed by Umedia with the participation of Having Me Films.
I Kill Giants was produced by Chris Columbus (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone), Michael Barnathan (The Help), Kyle Franke (Holidays), Joe Kelly (Big Hero 6), Kim Magnusson (Adam’s Apples), Martin Metz (Submergence), Adrian Politowski (Deep), and Nick Spicer (The Invitation). Peter Bevan (Erased), Johanna Hogan (Maudie), Michelle Miller (“Scary Larry”), Susan Mullan (Brooklyn), Justin Nappi (All Is Lost), Mark Radcliffe (Home Alone) Xinyue Sun and Wei Zou executive produced the fantasy drama, which RLJE Films will release in theaters in 2018.
Ward and Jess De Leo from RLJE negotiated the deal with Nate Bolotin at XYZ Films on behalf of the filmmakers.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.