Dark Horse and Universal Cable Productions sign first-look deal

More comic-books-based TV is on the way.

Universal Cable Productions announced today that it has teamed up with Dark Horse Entertainment in a first-look deal that will focus on developing and producing scripted programming from Dark Horse's comic book library as well as new material.

According to the announcement, UCP and Dark Horse began talks for the deal at Comic-Con in 2014 when Dark Horse introduced some of its top creators to UCP executives. Multiple television projects are now in the works with direct involvement from the comic creators. 

"As the landscape of narrative storytelling evolves, Dark Horse is thrilled to be working in the golden age of television with Universal Cable Productions," said Dark Horse president and founder Mike Richardson in a press release. "Their creative team has embraced the spirit of the Dark Horse brand and we’re proud to be partnered with them."

Projects currently in development include "Harrow County," "The Umbrella Academy," "Back Up" and "Concrete."

In "Harrow County," based on the series by Cullen Bunn and Tyler Crook, Emmy discovers on the eve of her 18th birthday that she is the reincarnation of a powerful witch who was put to death on the day she was born. The townsfolk want her dead, and she must embrace her unusual powers in order to survive.

"The Umbrella Academy," created by Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba, is about estranged members of the titular group (superheroes with bizarre powers) reuniting after nine years in order to save the world.

"Back Up" is based on a feature script by Tom Vaughn and takes place in the near future, when technology allows people to be backed up -- in the same way we back up computer data -- to protect them against death. Brad Anderson ("The Machinist") is in negotiations to direct this project that Kenny Golde is set to write and executive produce. Jim Wedaa is also attached as an executive producer.

The Eisner Award-winning "Concrete" by Paul Chadwick follows Ronald Lithgow coming to terms with his new form and trying to live a normal life after his subconscious is transplanted into a stone body.

"Dark Horse Entertainment has an incredible roster of fantastical, witty and mind-bending stories,” said Dawn Olmstead, UCP's executive vice president of development. "It's going to be a wild and imaginative ride."

Twitter: @tracycbrown

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