EXCLUSIVE: H.P. Lovecraft and the words ‘kid-friendly’ seem incongruent, but in animated form, it takes on a different light. Shout! Factory has struck a deal with Arcana Studios to distribute a new, animated feature Howard Lovecraft And The Frozen Kingdom which is based on the graphic novel of the same name. Under terms of the deal, Shout! Factory has secured all U.S. rights to the film in all areas — theatrical, digital, broadcast, home entertainment — and will have rights for cross-platform releases in Canada. The movie will bow sometime next year.
H.P. Lovecraft, of course, was one of the most prominent horror writers of the 1920s. Howard Phillips Lovecraft started out writing pulp fiction and then began writing books. He created stories filled with monsters, aliens, weird tales and horror. The graphic novels introduced characters such as Cthulhu, a part octopus, part man and part dragon. He also wrote in more disguised prose about another called the Necronomicon.
The intent of the project is to introduce another generation to Lovecraft’s writings. The project is said to blend the biography of the young H.P. with his writings in a family-friendly genre that will both be spooky and entertain.
The project itself is based on the graphic novel by Bruce Brown and production is currently underway. It is written, directed and produced by Arcana CEO founder Sean Patrick O’Reilly. It is also being produced by Michelle O’Reilly. The cast will be announced in the coming months.
The Lovecraft graphic novel series is part of the Arcana library. “At Comic Con this year, we introduced our Cthulhu mascot alongside the Necronomicon and the response was incredible,” said Arcana’s O’Reilly.
Arcana opened its animation division in 2012. The Canadian company’s team is working on this film. They include art director and senior modeler Gary Yuen, senior editor Brendan Hansell, CG supervisor Haqui Gbadamosi, animation director Frank Poon and animation lead Billy Zhao.
“Sean and his film production team offer a compelling vision for storytelling, supported with amazing art direction,” said Melissa Boag, Senior Vice President of Kids & Family Entertainment at Shout! Factory.
Shout’s Vice President of Acquisitions Jordan Fields added,“This will be quite a ride.”