Frank Darabont, the writer/director of such films as The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile and The Mist, is in final talks to write and direct a small screen adaptation of the Image Comics series The Walking Dead. Darabont pitched the concept to AMC and several other outlets, with Gale Anne Hurd, who is attached to exec produce. The black and white comic book series was created by writer Robert Kirkman and artist Tony Moore in 2003, and is considered to be the definitive zombie graphic novel ever created.
The ongoing series now has over 60 issues, which have been collected in 10 trade paperbacks (but month’s end). You can pick up the first tradepaperback on Amazon for around $10. Brad Ladlee from Examiner said that The Walking Dead “realistically depicts the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse” and is “[m]ore than just a scary story about zombies, it is about how people would physically and mentally handle the dead rising and survive the fall of modern society.”
The story follows a group of people, led by a small-town Kentucky Police Officer named Rick Grimes, trying to survive in a world overrun by zombies. But unlike most zombie films, the books are more character centric. AMC’s senior vp of programing Joel Stillverman says that the tv show will stay faithful to the graphic novels.
“This is not about zombies popping out of closets,” Stillerman told Variety. “This is a story about survival, and the dynamics of what happens when a group is forced to survive under these circumstances. The world is portrayed in a smart, sophisticated way.”
And if you think about it, who better to do a series set in a character survival piece set in a horrific world than Frank Darabont? I have the super duper massive trade paperback which collects the first 8 volumes of the series, but have been unable to find time to begin reading it. That said, I’ve had many conversations in the past with my comic geek friends who have read the series. Most of them agreed that there would be no way to turn this into a film, and that it would work much better as a television series or cable miniseries.