IDW forms TV arm to bring comic books, zombies to life

Michelle Clancy | 18-10-2013

IDW Publishing, a publisher of comic books and graphic novels with more than 300 original properties, has launched a new division, IDW Entertainment, to fund and develop new television properties based on IDW Publishing's catalogue.

Entertainment industry veteran David Ozer has been named president of the new division. Ozer will work to identify, develop and oversee brand extensions across IDW Publishing's portfolio of comics and graphic novels for the global television market. A key focus for the division is the financing, development and production of television series with the goal of securing straight-to-series commitments from networks. Ozer's background includes executive-level roles at Sonar Entertainment, Starz Media/IDT Entertainment and DIC Entertainment.

"IDW Publishing's significant growth over the past several years, particularly in the theatrical arena with a number of properties currently in development at major studios, together with the ever increasing popularity of our creator-owned titles, have provided us with the ideal opportunity to expand into multi-platform entertainment," said Ted Adams, CEO and publisher, IDW Publishing. "David's depth of distribution and finance expertise in television, coupled with his production knowledge and his extensive relationships within the entertainment community, make him the perfect choice for spearheading our aggressive move into television."

Circle of Confusion, the executive producer of the hit AMC series The Walking Dead, will oversee packaging and creative development of the division and will executive produce the company's projects.

"IDW Publishing's properties have a proven track record and built-in appeal with today's sophisticated entertainment consumer," said Ozer. "Given the company's growth and subsequent financial success, investing in the development and production of its projects into television programming is the next logical and strategic step in growing IDW's media empire, and further solidifies IDW as a key player in both the theatrical and television entertainment arena."

IDW Publishing already has several active theatrical projects in development. Lore, from writer TP Louise and acclaimed artist Ashley Wood is in development at Warner Bros with Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson set to star in a script written by Corey Goodman and Jeremy Lott. David Green (Echo) is set to direct with Mad Chance's Andrew Lazar and Circle of Confusion's David Alpert and Rick Jacobs producing. Barry Sonnenfeld will executive-produce. World War Robot, created by Ashley Wood, is in development at Disney. Jon Spaihts is writing the screenplay with Jerry Bruckheimer producing. Zombies vs. Robots, created by writer and IDW Publishing's chief creative officer Chris Ryall and artist Ashley Wood is in development with Sony with Platinum Dunes and Circle of Confusion producing. Adams is an executive producer on all three projects.