Josh Wakely Bob Dylan
Rex Shutterstock/Courtesy of Josh Wakely

Lionsgate TV is closing in on a deal with Amazon for an hourlong drama series inspired by characters and themes from Bob Dylan’s vast archive of songs.

“Time Out of Mind” will be spearheaded by writer-director Josh Wakely, who managed to secure the wide-ranging rights deal for Dylan’s song catalog. The project, which is in the early stage of development, will be produced through Wakely’s Sydney-based Grace production banner.

The deal with the Dylan archive marks another musical rights coup for Wakely, the Australian filmmaker who earlier this year announced a deal with the Beatles’ Northern Songs publishing unit for a Netflix animated children’s series, “Beat Bugs,” that will feature stories inspired by Beatles tunes. Eddie Vedder, Pink and Sia are among the artists lined up to record Beatles covers for the series, which bows on Netflix this summer.

Details of the Dylan project, named for the songwriter’s acclaimed 1997 album, are still sketchy. Dylan’s incomparable body of work over the past 50-plus years could yield any number of intriguing characters. The plan for the series is that two characters or story threads from Dylan songs that wind up colliding in some way.

It’s not entirely clear how Wakely came to spearhead the project. He has limited credits as an actor and writer-director, mostly of short films in Australia.

Amazon has a number of music-themed series in development including a Grateful Dead-themed drama series produced by founding member Bob Weir.

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On the film side Wakely is developing a feature take on the 2011 memoir “Half a Life” by Darin Strauss. The book revolves around a man’s struggle with the accidental death of his high school classmate. Wakely is repped by CAA, Untitled Entertainment and Hirsch Wallerstein.

“Time Out of Mind” adds to the growing slate of premium SVOD series on Lionsgate TV’s roster. The studio is home to Netflix’s “Orange is the New Black” and four series for Hulu: “Casual,” Deadbeat,” “RocketJump: The Show” and “Dimension 404.”

(Pictured: Bob Dylan, Josh Wakely)

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