It’s official: Four months after Hulu opted not to go forward with its Locke & Key pilot, the project — an adaptation of Joe Hill’s comic Locke & Key, from Carlton Cuse and IDW Entertainment — has closed a deal for a 10-episode series order at rival Netflix. Talks between Netflix and the Locke & Key producers started shortly after Hulu surprisingly passed on the pilot in March.
As we previously reported, Netflix is not picking up the existing Hulu pilot, written by Joe Hill, to series but will be redeveloping the scripts and re-casting the new series.
The Netflix series was created by Hill and developed by Cuse, Coleite and Averill; the new first episode will be written by Hill and Coleite; Cuse and Averill will serve as showrunners.
It director Andy Muschietti, who helmed the Hulu pilot, is working on the film’s sequel, so he will not be available to direct the new version for Netflix. But he will serve as an executive producer on the series, along with Barbara Muschietti as well as Cuse, who has been instrumental in the project’s efforts to find a new home, via his Genre Arts production company, Hill, Averill and Coleite. Also exec producing are Lindsey Springer through Genre Arts, Ted Adams and David Ozer for IDW Entertainment and David Alpert and Rick Jacobs via Circle of Confusion..
Locke & Key, written by Hill, is a horror/fantasy series that revolves around three siblings who, after the gruesome murder of their father, move to their ancestral home in Massachusetts only to find the house has magical keys that give them a vast array of powers and abilities. Little do they know, a devious demon also wants the keys, and will stop at nothing to attain them.
Staying on from the three young actors playing the siblings is It co-star Jackson Robert Scott.
The Hulu pilot’s cast also included Frances O’Connor, Nate Corddry, Samantha Mathis, Owen Teague and Danny Glover.
Locke & Key was ordered to pilot in April 2017, before the top management changes at Hulu. The surprising pass on the pilot came after Hulu’s creative team, who had supported it, had given the project a blinking green light — setting up a full writers room that produced 6-7 backup scripts and having the sets built with everyone ready to go.
This marks a happy ending for Locke & Key, which previously was adapted during the 2010-11 development season when it reached the pilot stage at Fox with Josh Friedman writing, Mark Romanek directing and Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci producing alongside DreamWorks TV. Back then the pilot, starring Sarah Bolger, Miranda Otto and Nick Stahl, did not go to series, though the title has remained a cult favorite, with Hill and IDW Entertainment in 2016 announcing that they were taking a new stab at it for television. The unaired Fox pilot screened at Comic-Con in 2011.
The IDW Publishing Locke & Key comic book franchise, co-created by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez, has garnered both awards and acclaim during its ten-year run; has been translated into dozens of languages across the globe; and has sold millions of copies worldwide.