Robert Kirkman, creator of The Walking Dead and Invincible comics, signed a deal with Amazon studios to have his Skybound Entertainment company work exclusively with Amazon studios. According to The Hollywood Reporter Kirkman’s deal with Amazon will run for two years.
Skybound Entertainment is a hub for a number of mediums. The company deals in television, film, digital content, comics, interactive gaming, and live events. David Alpert and Robert Kirkman head this effort, and will be developing television projects to debut on Amazon Prime Video. Amazon Studios has been seeking to push into new realms with science fiction programming, along with fantasy and horror genres. Bryan and Sean Furst will serve as overseers of the project with Amazon along with Kirkman and Alpert.
The Walking Dead has been a hit series on AMC since 2010 when it debuted on the network. It was developed from a comic and has since been expanded to video games as well as talk shows delving into the content of each episode. The series itself is in its eighth season this October. Fear the Walking Dead, also a Kirkman creation, launched on AMC in 2015. Along with this, another Kirkman creation, Outcast a horror genre series on Cinemax since 2016 has had a degree of success in its first run.
What Does This Mean The Walking Dead?
From part of the official press release from Skybound Entertainment:
Sharon Tal Yguado has been an instrumental force in the success of ‘Walking Dead’ and ‘Outcast’ from day one. Being able to not only continue that relationship, but also expand it into new territory with the vast resources of Amazon, means great things are ahead for myself, David Alpert, Skybound and fans of awesome entertainment.
So from the looks of it, for now at least, The Walking Dead and the other titles will stay on their respective networks. Amazon Prime will only be home to any new content from Skybound Entertainment.
The inclusion of the name Sharon Tal Yguado is also important to note because she seems to be an instrumental piece in how this deal happened. She was Head of Fox International Studios and responsible for the success of AMC’s The Walking Dead, and Cinemax’s Outcast. She was also responsible for the content strategy that brought Legion to FX.
Yguado has been Head of Event Series for upcoming Amazon Studios programming as of January this year. She reports to Amazon Studios head Roy Price.
With Yguado at the helm of series programming for Amazon, it’s little wonder that this deal went through. What this ultimately means for comic book fans – is that we have more places to watch our favorite shows.
What It Means For The Industry
This move comes off the heels of Amazon competitor, Netflix, acquiring Mark Millar’s Millarworld and the associated intellectual property. Not only did Netflix make waves with this purchase, but Disney made a move to sever their relationship with the streaming giant, deciding to launch their own streaming service.
Disney is not alone in offering their own streaming service. DC Comics will soon be launching their own and they already have a Titans live-action television lined up as well as Young Justice Outsiders. Along with DC and Disney, CBS is debuting their brand new Star Trek: Discovery series on CBS All Access beginning this fall.
It seems that these major studios in their rush to capitalize on the popularity of streaming services like Netflix might actually be missing the point entirely. All of these different streaming services will stretch consumers thin. We don’t want to pay for 5 or 6 different streaming services. There is value in Netflix’s model with licensing content.
What do you think? Are you excited to see Kirkman take his Skybound Entertainment to Amazon?