Tag Archives: hivemind

EC’s Weird Fantasy and More is Being Brought to Life by Hivemind

Hivemind has announced a new partnership with William M. Gaines Agent, Inc., the proprietors of EC Comics, for a number of film and television projects based on the hugely influential – and often controversial – comic book publisher’s groundbreaking legacy and library. One of the first endeavors of the partnership will be Weird Fantasy – a new television show inspired by the shocking and subversive sci-fi/fantasy series that collided visionary genre storytelling with socially conscious themes of racial and gender equality, anti-war advocacy, nuclear disarmament and ecological preservation to create some of the most impactful and hotly debated comic book stories ever produced. This is the first time that WMG Agent Inc. has made Weird Fantasy available for adaptation in more than two decades.

Changing the industry seemingly overnight in the early 1950s under the stewardship of publisher and writer William M. GainesEC Comics quickly became the dominant force of the era’s booming comic book industry, selling tens of millions of copies annually and generating intense, nationwide controversies with taboo-smashing, confrontational stories in series like Tales From the Crypt and MAD Magazine. EC’s unique formula eschewed superheroes in favor of science fiction, fantasy, war, horror, and humor – redefining comics storytelling with a newly sophisticated and artist-driven approach that would pave the way for the ascendancy of both Marvel Comics and the counterculture underground in the decades to come.

Weird Fantasy Judgement Day

A lynchpin of the EC line during the publisher’s creative watershed, Weird Fantasy produced dozens of seminal stories that intersected razor-sharp social commentary with epic science fiction, high adventure and dark fantasy by some of the most celebrated comics creators to ever work in the medium, including Frank FrazettaWally Wood, and Harvey KurtzmanWeird Fantasy‘s defiantly rebellious sensibility is perhaps best exemplified by “Judgment Day” – a history-making story by William M. GainesAl Feldstein, and Joe Orlando that championed the then-burgeoning Civil Rights movement and provoked a showdown with the Comics Code Authority, the pro-censorship organization that policed and sanitized the comic book industry for more than 50 years.

William M. Gaines

The new partnership is also slated to include a feature film based on the life of William M. Gaines, the former EC Comics publisher and self-styled comics provocateur who challenged the rigid moral code of 1950s America with shockingly innovative and deeply subversive tales of fantasy, horror and humor that sold in the millions…only to find his company investigated by Congress and his books burned in the streets in the wake of EC’s staggering success. Chronicling one of the greatest untold chapters in American history, the film will follow Gaines’ transformation from a staid, New York publishing impresario into a counterculture hero, guardian of artistic freedom, and champion of the First Amendment as his darkly humorous journey through the troubled birth of the comic book industry reveals the Red Scare-era witch hunt that nearly doomed an American art form, through the subsequent founding of MAD Magazine and eventual rise of Marvel Comics in EC’s wake.

Both projects will be produced by Gaines’ daughter and grandson, Cathy Mifsud and Corey Mifsud, for EC, alongside Dinesh ShamdasaniSean DanielJason F. Brown, and Hunter Gorinson for Hivemind. The projects will mark Gorinson’s first for Hivemind, where he also has joined as VP Brand & Content Strategy.

Hivemind Acquires Gideon Falls for Television

Hivemind today announced that it has won an intense multi-studio bidding war and acquired the rights to bring the hit Image Comics comic book series, Gideon Falls, to television in partnership with co-creators Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino. Hivemind’s Jason BrownSean DanielKathy Lingg and Dinesh Shamdasani will executive produce the series alongside co-creators Lemire and Sorrentino with high-level creative talent already circling the project.

An atmospheric thriller colliding rural mystery and urban horror, the series follows an ensemble cast of seemingly random strangers – a washed-up Catholic priest, an uncompromising female sheriff, and a young recluse obsessed with unraveling a conspiracy buried in his city’s trash – as they become drawn into a mystery connected to a long-forgotten local legend.

Established in 2018, Hivemind is the new production entity from long-time producing partners Sean Daniel and Jason Brown, Bad Robot veteran Kathy Lingg and former Valiant Entertainment CEO and Chief Creative Officer Dinesh Shamdasani. Dedicated to partnering with high-level creative talent and globally recognized intellectual properties from the worlds of science fiction, fantasy, horror, comic books, video games, anime, and more, Hivemind recently inked a first-look deal with Amazon Studios. Gideon Falls marks a major new rights acquisition for the label, which will develop the series as an hour-long horror drama based on Lemire and Sorrentino’s repeatedly sold-out, critically acclaimed comic title of the same name that instantly became one of 2018’s biggest breakout hits upon its debut in March.

Gideon Falls is the latest property to join Hivemind’s quickly expanding roster of film and television projects. The company currently produces the acclaimed science fiction series The Expanse – which recently made a historic move to Amazon – as well as Netflix’s upcoming adaptation of The Witcher, based on the series of novels that inspired the best-selling game franchise. Its next feature film will be Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark with producer/co-writerGuillermo del Toro and director André Øvredal, which begins production this summer.

Gideon Falls will also notably re-team Lemire with producer Dinesh Shamdasani, who joins Hivemind as Co-President. Lemire and Shamdasani previously collaborated on multiple best-selling comics projects, including The Valiantand Bloodshot Reborn, during his time at the helm of Valiant Entertainment, which Shamdasani departed following a major acquisition in early 2018. In addition to his duties at Hivemind, Shamdasani is also currently producing a big-screen adaptation of the Bloodshotcomic book series for Sony Pictures with star Vin Diesel, director Dave Wilson, and Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Eric Heisserer that is set to begin filming this summer.