April 11, 2012 10:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Walking Dead' Creator Robert Kirkman Developing New Show for AMC (Exclusive)
AMC is doubling down on Robert Kirkman.
The cable network is reteaming with The Walking Dead creator/executive producer to develop his newest comic, Thief of Thieves, The Hollywood Reporter has learned exclusively.
The Image Comics/Skybound title revolves around a master thief with a dual identity who, while struggling to quit the business, opts to steal only what has already been stolen.
The project reunites Kirkman and Walking Dead producer David Alpert of Circle of Confusion with Chic Eglee, with whom they worked on the freshman season of the hit zombie drama. Eglee, whose credits include the Showtime double-life drama Dexter, will serve as showrunner should Thief of Thieves move to series.
"Much like The Walking Dead brought horror to television in a unique and groundbreaking way, I feel Thief of Thieves can do the same thing for heist stories, showing the humanity of all the characters, including the criminals," Kirkman says.
Released in February, the first two issues Thief of Thieves sold out on their respective release dates; issue No. 3 is in stores Wednesday.
Kirkman, who created Image/Skybound's Walking Dead in 2003 and continues to pen each monthly issue, developed the collaborative title Thief of Thieves based on his experience in the writers room of the zombie drama. Nick Spencer penned the first arc of Thief of Thieves, with Kirkman on board as head writer to oversee the series.
"AMC recognizes the limitless ideas generated by the comic industry," Kirkman says. "Their dedication to bringing The Walking Dead to life as a TV show has been key to its success and I'm excited about the potential of Thief of Thieves to reach similar levels of success."
Walking Dead has proven to be a valuable property for the network, with its second-season finale in March shattering cable ratings marks with 9 million total viewers and records in the advertiser-coveted adults 18-49, 25-54 and 18-34 demographics. The March figures marked the third time the AMC series broke the demo records, besting its own record highs for the second time.
"Working with AMC has been a tremendously positive experience, and I'm looking forward to continuing and strengthening our relationships there," Kirkman says. "And I can't neglect to mention I've been dying to work with Chic again since we wrapped on The Walking Dead season one."
In addition to Thief of Thieves, Eglee (The Shield) also is developing another comic property, Brian Michael Bendis' Image-turned-Marvel/Icon title Powers, which is in the works at FX.
"It's incredibly exciting to put the band back together with Robert, Chic and AMC; it just feels great," Alpert says.
Kirkman is repped by CAA and Katz Golden Rosenman; Alpert is with Behr Abramson; Eglee is with Michael Gendler.