Frank Darabont to bring Walking Dead to AMC

If you can't wait for the new George A Romero film, Survival of the Dead, it looks like something may be on the horizon that might just tide you over.

AMC is close to finalizing one of the richest development deals ever with Frank Darabont to write and direct a series adaptation of the Image Comics graphic novel series "The Walking Dead," penned by Robert Kirkman. Gale Anne Hurd of Valhalla Motion Pictures and David Alpert of Circle of Confusion are also on board to exec produce.

For those who don't know, the story is set among a group of zombie survivors of an apocalypse who are led by a police officer, Rick Grimes, in search of a safe place to live. Numerous editions of the "Walking Dead" graphic novels have been published since 2003.

Joel Stillerman, AMC's senior VP of programming, production and original content, said the project appealed to them because of "the quality of the storytelling" in Kirkman's work. The series will stay faithful to the tone of the original novels, he said.

"This is not about zombies popping out of closets," Stillerman said. "This is a story about survival, and the dynamics of what happens when a group is forced to survive under these circumstances. The world (in 'Walking Dead') is portrayed in a smart, sophisticated way."

Darabont and Hurd pitched the project to AMC and several other outlets. There is no studio attached yet. The duo's involvement made the project a must-have for the cabler, Stillerman said.


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