EXCLUSIVE: Chad Stahelski, director of the John Wick films, might be launching another film franchise. The former stuntman has been tapped to direct Sandman Slim, a film adaptation based on bestselling author Richard Kadrey’s nine-book fantasy series. Deadline broke the news that Studio 8 had acquired the film rights back in 2016 and is eyeing the project as a potential franchise vehicle.

Harper Voyager

The story centers on James “Sandman Slim” Stark, a fast-talking, hard-boiled, supernatural vigilante who escapes from Hell to avenge his girlfriend’s murder and hunt down the magicians responsible for getting him sent “downtown.”

Kerry Williamson, who penned the Netflix film What Happened to Monday, will adapt the novel. A previous draft was written by Kel Symons.

LBI Entertainment’s Patrick Walmsley and Julie Yorn are producing with John Lesher. Chris Goldberg is overseeing production for Studio 8 with Rishi Rajani.

Kadrey’s novel series has been translated into 10 languages and is listed in Barnes & Noble’s “Best Paranormal Fantasy Novels of the Last Decade.” The 10th book will be published this year by Harper Voyager. Kadrey is repped by Curtis Brown.

Stahelski, who will direct the third installment of Lionsgate’s Keanu Reeves-led John Wick, is repped by WME and Tara Kole of Gang, Tyre.

Funded in partnership with the Chinese investment management firm Fosun Group and Sony, Studio 8’s upcoming release slate includes the Matthew McConaughey-starrer White Boy Rick and Alpha directed by Albert Hughes.