Netflix is serious about this comic book adaptation business. While some have been waiting to hear about a potential Ghost Rider series, the streaming service came out of nowhere with a perfect choice — a quirky superhero riff from Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba, The Umbrella Academy. Created while Way was still leading My Chemical Romance, the series of graphic novels was published by Dark Horse Entertainment. And indeed, two summers ago, Dark Horse had announced that it was one of several properties under first-look consideration with Universal Cable Productions. (As Ric mentioned on this week’s podcast, good lord, do we want Concrete to follow suit.)
From Dark Horse Entertainment and Netflix:
Based on the popular, Eisner award-winning comics and graphic novels created and written by Gerard Way (My Chemical Romance) and illustrated by Gabriel Bá, The Umbrella Academy is a live action series that follows the estranged members of a dysfunctional family of superheroes (The Umbrella Academy) — The Monocle, Spaceboy, The Kraken, The Rumor, The Séance, Number Five, The Horror, and The White Violin — as they work together to solve their father’s mysterious death while coming apart at the seams due to their divergent personalities and abilities. Published by Dark Horse Comics, the comic series garnered much praise from fans and critics alike for its alternate and twisted take on the superhero genre.
“I am thrilled that The Umbrella Academy has found a home at Netflix. I couldn’t think of a better place for the vision Gabriel Bá and myself had when creating the comic, and cannot wait for people to experience that world as a live action show,” said Gerard Way.
“What drew us to The Umbrella Academy is that it’s wholly unique, visual and stylized,” said Cindy Holland, Vice President, Original Content for Netflix. “These aren’t the usual superheroes, and this series will embrace the singular tone of the graphic novels — dark yet humorous, supernatural yet grounded in reality. We’re excited to see this world and introduce these unforgettable heroes to Netflix members around the globe.”
“It’s a thrill to be producing this wonderful show for Netflix,” said Jeff Wachtel, Chief Content Officer, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment, and President, Universal Cable Productions. “It’s been a passion project for the UCP development crew and we can’t wait to bring it to life.”
The Umbrella Academy will be produced by Universal Cable Productions. Steve Blackman (Fargo, Altered Carbon) will serve as executive producer and showrunner, with additional executive producers Bluegrass Television and Mike Richardson and Keith Goldberg from Dark Horse Entertainment. Gerard Way will serve as co-executive producer. The pilot script was adapted from the comic book series by Jeremy Slater (The Exorcist).
Way is currently the curator/edit of the Young Animal imprint for DC Comics, and writer of the most recent revival of Doom Patrol. Of course, I knew this kid was going to do big things when I first met him at Comic-Con…