As long as I’ve been writing the Beat, I’ve heard rumors of TV networks starting their own comics lines to cheaply (sprry) generate IP in-house. (Remember when Netflix was going to start a comics line because they signed up Millarworld?) It’s never quite happened that way yet, but AMC Networks Publishing might just be the closest thing yet – a publishing spin-off of the network that will put out fan-friendly, genre-forward specialty books, comics, original graphic novels and more.
The line is headed up by publishing veteran and Head of AMC Networks Publishing Mike Zagari, who worked at Marvel, DC, Disney and Aftershock before moving over to AMC, so he certainly knows the territory.
Upcoming projects include several comics, a graphic novel and a coffee table book, in partnership with talents like Kirk Hammett, Brendan Fletcher, Greg Nicotero, Stephen King and many more.
The first AMC publishing venture was a coffee table book, The Art of AMC’s The Walking Dead Universe, published in partnership with Image Comics and Skybound. The new AMC Publishing output will have various print partners, including Titan Books and Every Cloud.
“We’re excited to launch this new initiative with talented creators, writers, artists and storytellers to further engage our passionate fanbases with the stories and characters they love, as well as open the doors to discover new and compelling worlds,” said Zagari in a statement. “From deeper dives on AMC’s The Walking Dead Universe, Shudder’s Creepshow and Acorn TV’s Miss Fisher, to a brand-new collection of fantasy and comic-based tales from Kirk Hammett, Marcel Feldmar, Brenden Fletcher and more, we can’t wait to entertain and thrill our audience and fans in new and innovative ways.”
- Shudder’s Creepshow: From Script to Scream (working title), based on the hit anthology series from Nicotero, Stan Spry (The Cartel), Russell Binder (Striker Entertainment), and in partnership with Titan Books. The coffee-table book is written by Dennis Prince, designed by John J. Hill, and co-produced by Julia Hobgood, and with behind-the-scenes of the acclaimed Creepshow series with deep dives into its riveting origins, gripping development, provocative production, sinister special effects, and much more.
“I grew up wearing down my fingertips paging through books on the making of my favorite movies,” said Nicotero. “I was ravenous to learn the behind-the-scenes secrets. So, I’m excited to be able to present a glimpse behind the making of this epic show!”
- Miss Fisher’s First Mysteries (working title) an original graphic novel based on the hit Acorn TV series Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries (adapted from the best-selling novels by Australian author Kerry Greenwood) and written by award-winning and New York Times Bestselling author Cecil Castelluci (Shade The Changing Girl, Star Wars: Moving Target) and in partnership with Every Cloud Productions. In the graphic novel, the year is 1917 and there is no way the ivy-covered walls of a posh English finishing school will hold the rebellious spirit of the Honorable Miss Fisher. Outraged when her childhood friend is accused of murder, young Phryne stages a daring escape and braves the high seas as a stowaway – bound for danger and romance in the dark alleys, dubious theatres and glamorous mansions of wartime Melbourne.
- Nights of Lono (working title) is a comic by Metallica’s lead guitarist and horror aficionado Kirk Hammett and his writing partner/co-creator Marcel Feldmar, tells the story of a troubled female detective in 1989 Hawaii who is hired to find King Kamehameha’s tomb before it is discovered by an unscrupulous occultist from the mainland. A mix of mystery and supernatural adventure, the story is a self-aware journey through standard detective tropes and cliches that are sharpened and given new life with fresh takes on the myths and folklore of the Hawaiian Islands.
- Oubliette (working title) a comic by Brendan Fletcher, takes place in a small town where people live by a simple rule: “If you were born of the earth around the lake, then around the lake you shall stay until you return to the earth”. The story explores the struggle of a woman who escaped the impossible gravity of her birthplace only to be drawn home to bury her father. She finds herself once again trapped in a cycle of pain and regret as she digs into the mystery of the sinkhole that drained the lake and took her father’s life. There’s something dark and wicked down there, in that hole in the lake. Something that’s been waiting a long, long time to come to the surface…
Earlier projects under the AMC Networks Publishing banner include 11 Weeks of TWD Art, which featured 11 custom pieces of artwork looking back at significant moments from each season of the show’s decade-long run. The 11 artists included Alex Maleev (Daredevil, Batman), Will Sliney (Spider-Man, Star Wars), Kirk Etienne (Paradox Press’ The Project), Christine Norrie (She Votes), Ariela Kristantina (Adora & The Distance, Chain), Zelda Devon (BoJack Horseman), Rafael De Latorre (Black Widow), Micheline Pitt (Grummy), Declan Shalvey (Moon Knight, Wolverine), Mel Milton (Spider-Man: Freshman Year), and Jenny Frison (Wonder Woman).