Earlier this week, it was Penguin finally getting into the graphic novel business, years after every other other book publisher did so. And now Amazon Studios, Amazon the etailer’s content development division, is also getting into the graphic novel game with BLACKBURN BURROW, a Civil War horror tale by Ron Marz and Matthew Dow Smith . The tale is based on a screenplay by screenwriter Jay Levy, and if that rings a chime that this is part of the “comics-to-movie” business model, your ears should be ringing.
But as an added bonus—if you read the book on their site and leave feedback…they will give you a $5 Amazon gift card. Now this business model we could get to like!
Here’s the log line.
In Blackburn Burrow, Mister is a legendary fighter rumored to take on the strange and supernatural. When a Union general requests his help in investigating the disappearance of a group of his soldiers from a small town in the South, Mister initially declines, refusing to get involved in the politics between the North and the South. Mister’s interest, however, is piqued when the last contact with these soldiers referenced the walking dead and a man Mister has been tracking all his life, the man who brought him into this world. Mister teams with Merrin, a young female survivor, to stop an ancient uprising and discover the family secret that connects his past to the small town of Blackburn Burrow.
Amazon Studios is completely upfront about this as well—BLACKBURN BURROW was selected by a crowdsourcing on the Amazon Studios website where screenplays are picked for development by visitor voting. 12 Gauge Studios produced the resulting book, which is available on the website, or right here, via the Graphicly platform:
More in the PR below:
Amazon Studios, the original content arm of Amazon.com, Inc., is introducing an all-new digital comic book today – Blackburn Burrow, a story set in Civil War America where supernatural horrors are infesting a small Appalachian town in Northern Georgia. Blackburn Burrow first came to Amazon Studios in the form of a feature film screenplay from writer Jay Levy. Community feedback, gathered from Amazon Studios’ crowdsourcing model, triggered the idea for the popular project to be adapted into a digital comic that would be shared with audiences for feedback and tested for viability as a major motion picture.
The Blackburn Burrow digital comic looks and reads like a traditional book and is available for free through a variety of sites and platforms including top digital comic provider Graphicly, as well as AmazonStudios.com, Amazon Studios Facebook page and the Kindle Store. For more information on how to get the comic, visit www.amazonstudios.com or search for Blackburn Burrow in the Kindle Store.
Amazon Studios’ Blackburn Burrow digital comic book is produced by 12 Gauge Comics, which teamed with renowned comics writer Ron Marz (Silver Surfer, Green Lantern, Marvel vs. DC, Batman/Aliens) and veteran illustrator Matthew Dow Smith (Doctor Who, X-Men Icons , Mirror’s Edge, Day of Judgment) to shape the story and look of the comic.
“This is a very exciting new venture for Amazon Studios. Beyond entertaining lots of comic fans, we see value in digital comics as a new way to test screenplays and learn more about fan engagement,” said Roy Price, Director of Amazon Studios. “The 12 Gauge team has done beautiful work on the Blackburn Burrow digital comic and we are thrilled to share it with audiences to see how they react to the story of Blackburn Burrow.”
Like movie and episodic series projects that exist within Amazon Studios, the public will have the opportunity to provide feedback and direction on Blackburn Burrow as the story continues to unfold. The entire Blackburn Burrow comic will be released over a period of four months with new issues coming out every four weeks. Each release will be accompanied by a poll related to content in that issue that encourages readers to give feedback and provide comments.