EXCLUSIVE: Brave director Mark Andrews and his former Pixar colleague Andrew Gordon have teamed up with Israeli producer Oded Turgeman to develop an animated fantasy drama that is in the works at Fox.
The network has closed a script deal, including back-up script, for Hawkmaster from the trio.
The project is set in a fantasy world, where Knights ride giant Birds of Prey, and Kess, a young woman who has always dreamed of flying, encounters a mysterious Hawk without its rider and soon finds herself caught up in a dangerous plot to kill the Queen. With the help of the Four Winds, renegade Knights banished from the kingdom, Kess will discover what it means to be a Knight and trust your winged companion with your life.
Hawkmaster comes from Fox Entertainment and Bento Box Entertainment.
Andrews, who directed the 2012 Academy Award-winning feature film Brave, will write and exec produce. A key member of Pixar’s senior creative team for many years, he was also head of story for The Incredibles and Ratatouille and co-directed and co-write live-action feature John Carter for Disney.
His former Pixar colleague Andrew Gordon is exec producing. Gordon spent 20 years at Pixar Animation Studios, leading such characters as Mike Wazowski in Monsters, Inc., Gill in Finding Nemo, and Edna Mode in The Incredibles. He is also working on upcoming animated feature Ron’s Gone Wrong, which features the voices of Zach Galifianakis and Olivia Colman.
Turgeman will also exec produce; the Jersualem-born producer is President and Partner of the Operating Room and is developing projects such as Polarizers at Epic Story Media and Wild Brain’s Summer Memories, which is the first animated co-production between Israel and Canada.
Hawkmaster is the latest animation project in the works for Fox. It recently put an adaptation of Robert C. O’Brien’s Rats of NIMH book series into development and Fox Entertainment President Michael Thorn told Deadline that it was moving into its second phase of its animation strategy.
Two of the key planks of this plan are ownership and expanding its animated slate to include more adult fare.
“We’re really ramping up our own content, making deals with creators to own our own animation. There are exceptions, where we’re working with other partners to help grow our slate, doing [The Flinstones project] Bedrock with Warner Bros and Clue with eOne, but ownership is definitely a key part of it,” said Thorn. “We love our family shows, they’re iconic, but we’re looking to go beyond family and start to explore things that are more dramatic.”
Andrews is repped by CAA and attorney Nancy Newhouse Porter. Gordon is repped by attorney Molly Fenton at Cohen Gardner Law. Turgeman is repped by Ryan Saul at The Cartel, and Craig Emanuel at Paul Hastings, LLC.
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