November 11, 2013
The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman is expanding his TV universe to the world of exorcisms.
The comic and potential series centers on Kyle Barnes, who has been plagued by possession since he was a child. Now an adult, he embarks on a spiritual journey to find answers, but what he uncovers could mean the end of life on Earth as we know it. The comic will debut in 2014.
Kirkman will pen the script and executive produce alongside Circle of Confusion’s David Alpert (The Walking Dead). The drama, which was first announced in March, hails from Fox International Channels — the company that distributes Walking Dead worldwide and a strategic partner on the zombie drama who identified AMC’s ratings juggernaut during its script stage. It will mark Kirkman’s first time writing a pilot.
“At FIC, we’re committed to creating compelling, innovative television with A-list writers like Robert Kirkman, and with Cinemax we have a partner that is as passionate as we are about this very unique project,” said FIC exec vp original development and scripted programming Sharon Tal Yguado. “Outcast is unlike anything on television and has the potential to become another global phenomenon.”
The Walking Dead represents cable’s biggest drama among total viewers and key demographics. In its recent fourth-season premiere, the series continued to shatter its own ratings records, drawing more than 16 million total viewers and again ranking as TV’s No. 1 scripted series among adults 18-49. It has bested NBC’s Sunday Night Football multiple times in the demo this season and earned an early season-five renewal.
“Despite the success of The Walking Dead, Outcast is only my second foray into the horror genre. I think Kyle Barnes is every bit as compelling as Rick Grimes and demonic possession is way scarier than zombies — so this is going to be fun,” Kirkman said. “Starting a new project is like setting off on an long journey and I couldn’t ask for better travel companions than David Alpert and Sharon Tal Yguado and I’m thrilled to be a part of what Cinemax has planned for the next few years.”
For Kirkman, this marks the writer/executive producer’s fourth comic adaptation in the works. In addition to AMC’s The Walking Dead, Kirkman is prepping a scripted companion series to the ratings hit with EPs Gale Anne Hurd and Alpert. The untitled project, which AMC hopes to have on the air in 2015, is also based on Kirkman’s long-running zombie comics and is the third series (including Chris Hardwick-hosted gabfest The Talking Dead) tied to the franchise.