Fox has set the first series project for its Saturday latenight animation block skedded to bow early next year.
The network has acquired rights to the Internet vid phenom “Axe Cop,” which revolves around an ax-wielding police officer and his loyal allies. The plan is to order six 15-minute installments of the series for the Animation Domination HD block that Fox hopes to launch in the first quarter, with the shows running on air and on digital platforms.
Nick Weidenfeld, head of Animation Domination HD, said he sees the initial episode order as a pilot of sorts, allowing them to figure out the heart of the show. He’s now looking for a writer to adapt the concept created in 2010 by Malachai Nicolle, who was then 5 years old, and his adult brother Ethan Nicolle.
Weidenfeld, a former Adult Swim exec, had his eye on “Axe Cop” from the time he started scouting properties for Animation Domination HD earlier this year. The segs will be produced directly through Animation Domination, which is housed at the Fox network.
“It’s rare that you find something that feels both so new in its tone and content but also so fully formed,” he said. “To me it was very clear that ‘Axe Cop’ has potential to be a larger franchise.”
Weidenfeld at present is eyeing a handful of other properties in the hopes of getting at least three other properties ready to go in series form for the launch next year. The block will also be peppered with short-form animation pieces as it builds up to more series, he said.
The Nicolles were repped in the deal by Gotham Group, Surge Licensing and attorney Joel VanderKloot of Nelson Davis Wetzstein.