Netflix Inks Deal With Image Comics Founder and Deadpool and Youngblood Creator Rob Liefeld For His Extreme Universe.
‘Deadpool’s Rob Liefeld Takes His Extreme Universe To Netflix In Splashy Deal
Netflix has bet big on the Extreme Universe of graphic novel characters hatched by Rob Liefeld, whose disruptive Deadpool creation was the blockbuster movie surprise of 2016. Netflix has made a seven-figure rights deal, and Akiva Goldsman will set up and oversee a high-end writers’ room — similar to ones he has run for the Ology series, and the Transformers spinoffs — to generate a series of feature films with connective tissue, anchored by Liefeld’s comic book creations. Goldsman, Liefeld and Brooklyn Weaver will be the producers. Weed Road’s Greg Lessans will be exec producer.
The marriage between Extreme Universe and Goldsman came out of an earlier deal for Liefeld’s Avengelyne, which he is developing to direct at Paramount. The new deal gives Netflix a shot at a branded series of films. Extreme Universe covers six comic books, encompassing more than 50 characters that include Brigade, Bloodstrike, Cybrid, Re-Gex, Bloodwulf and Kaboom. An earlier deal had been struck involving producer Graham King and Fundamental Films, but that did not work out and Netflix stepped up.
The Extreme Universe characters are written very much in the subversive, edgy style that defined Deadpool. The Fox film became the highest-grossing R-rated movie ever, with a sequel opening May 18.
Essentially, Netflix has bet on a beachhead of fresh IP consisting of new characters for the big screen, at a time when superhero IP is in short supply.
“Rob Liefeld’s Extreme Universe features gritty stories and distinctive characters,” said Netflix feature film chief Scott Stuber. “Akiva’s creative voice has been behind some of the largest movie franchises, making him uniquely capable of helping bring these superheroes from the Extreme Universe to life for Netflix.”
THR also reports:
And while Netflix already has not only its Marvel properties, but also has acquired Mark Millar’s Millarworld company, Liefeld feels his characters will be able to stand out.
“I don’t have a superhero clubhouse,” he [Liefeld] says to cite the difference between Marvel’s Avengers movies and DC’s Justice League. “That’s not in my catalogue. I have a lot more people with different agendas and resentments and conflicts.”
He and Goldsman are plotting out which characters films will come first, but they are keeping those details secret for now. He does point to a familial struggle that’s important in the comics as an example of what the universe has to offer. In the comics, Brigade and Bloodstrike sees brothers John Stone and Cabbot Stone act as the Cain and Abel of the universe — on opposite sides of a super powered struggle.
“None of my characters are do-gooders. Deadpool wasn’t a do-gooder. Cable wasn’t a do-gooder,” says Liefeld. “My generation was taking things in a different direction than the people who got powers and automatically became heroes. The conflicts are a little different, they are slightly twisted, it’s the kind of stuff that found a tremendous audience.”
His Extreme Universe continues to publish stories via Image Comics.
Curious about what will be the first Netflix movie or TV show from team extreme.
Tags: Extreme, Image, Image Comics, Netflix, Rob Liefeld