“Aquaman” director James Wan’s Atomic Monster is teaming up with prominent Italian comics publisher Sergio Bonelli Editore to co-produce an English-language TV series based on cult horror comic “Dylan Dog.
Bonelli’s “Dylan Dog” property is being developed as a 10-episode live-action series based on Tiziano Sclavi’s popular franchise chronicling the exploits of its titular British paranormal investigator, who with his sidekick Grouch, a Marx impersonator, takes on cases that usually involve monsters, ghosts, vampires, werewolves and zombies.
The 33-year-old comic book series, published in the U.S. by Dark Horse Comics, boasts more than 500 installments and sales of more than 50 million copies worldwide.
Bonelli branched out into production a year ago with a dedicated arm called Bonelli Entertainment that was set up to give them a hands-on role. They bought back the rights to “Dylan Dog” which in 2011 was adapted by Hollywood indie Hyde Park Entertainment into a movie titled “Dylan Dog: Dead of Night” that bombed at the box office.
For Bonelli Entertainment the executive producers on the “Dylan Dog” series are the company’s development chief Vincenzo Sarno and Giovanni Cova, who is head of Milan-based entertainment marketing outfit QMI, along with Michele Masiero and Simone Airoldi who will be overseeing. For Atomic Monster the executive producers are James Wan and Michael Clear with Rob Hackett overseeing.
Atomic Monster is actively looking for writers for the “Dylan Dog” series, a statement said.
“James Wan and Atomic Monster are masters of the horror genre and have a proven sensibility on how best to adapt comics to the screen,” said the Milan-based publishers’ president Davide Bonelli” in a statement. “We are so thrilled to have this dream team working on one of our most important characters,” he added.
Wan, whose long list of impressive horror film credits comprises “Saw,” “Insidious” and “The Conjuring,” called “Dylan Dog” in the statement “one of my favorite comic books ever.”
Wan was represented in the agreement by Paradigm, Stacey Testro International, and attorney David Fox. Bonelli was represented by Bonelli Erede, and attorneys Giovanni Guglielmetti and Pasquale Tammaro.
Next up for Atomic Monster is “The Conjuring 3,” directed by Michael Chaves and starring Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson, which is set for release on September 11, 2020.
Bonelli Entertainment is currently in production on a live action feature film based on their “Dampyr” horror character co-produced with Italy’s Eagle Pictures and Brandon Box. The film is set for an international release in 2020.
In the TV arena Bonelli Entertainment is in production for Italian pubcaster RAI on an animated series based on its “Dragonero” fantasy franchise. On the publishing side Sergio Bonelli Editore will be partnering with DC Comics on a series of graphic novels where characters from the DC and Bonelli universes join forces, the statement said.