In a motion picture and TV rights deal surpassing seven figures, Nickelodeon Movies and Paramount Pictures have optioned the feature and TV rights to “Ecto-Kid” — a short story based on the comicbook property owned by writer and director Clive Barker.
Aim is to develop the property into both a feature film via Nickelodeon Movies and a TV property by kids cabler Nickelodeon.
“Ecto-Kid” was born of Barker’s Razorline comicbook label, first published by Marvel Comics in 1993. Series was co-written by Larry Wachowski (“The Matrix”).
Comicbook follows the exploits of Dex Mungo, the love child of a psychic woman and the ghost of a murdered man. Dex has the ability to see the living with one eye and the spectral realm of the dead — who “exist” among us — with his other eye.
“In ‘Ecto-Kid’ the Other Side is here and now,” Barker explained in an interview with Daily Variety. “This other world is our world — but not. It’s everywhere, but nowhere.”
Barker will produce the feature version of the story with Sony-based Don Murphy, whose other comicbook-derived feature, “From Hell,” is screening at the Venice Film Festival out of competition. (“Bully,” Murphy’s other current pic, is screening in the Venice competish.)
“I am really excited to bring a master of suspense like Clive Barker to a new, family audience,” said Murphy. “It’s an audience that Nickelodeon understands and reaches completely and very capably.”
Joe Daley, VP of production at Barker’s Seraphim Films banner, is exec producing the pic. Nickelodeon Movies’ prexy Albie Hecht and senior VP of production Julia Pistor will also serve as producers. Paramount’s exec VP of production Karen Rosenfelt will oversee its development at the studio.
For the TV version, Barker will exec produce, with Daley and Murphy producing.
“I hope to create a franchisable world for Nickelodeon,” said Barker, “but also one of great, transcendent beauty; one that reconfigures people’s expectations of what ghosts are, of what comes after death.”
Nickelodeon and Paramount are expected to pay in the high-six figures for the producing component of Barker’s deal, which was brokered by International Creative Management along with his reps at Colden, McKuin & Frankel.
Earlier this year Barker sold his bestselling novel “The Damnation Game” to Phoenix Pictures in a mid-six-figure deal. He will also produce that film under his Seraphim Films banner, with Daley exec producing.
Barker also closed a seven-figure deal with Disney for all movie and ancillary rights to four fantasy novels with the tentative title “The Abarat Quartet.”