IDW Options Sci-Fi Novel 'Awakened' for TV

'Impractical Jokers' star and author James Murray's book is being prepped for the small screen a year before its release.
Courtesy of IDW Publishing

IDW Entertainment is looking to Impractical Jokers star and author James Murray for the next big sci-fi TV series.

The comic book publisher and television production company has optioned Murray's forthcoming novel Awakened for television.

Slated for publication in June 2018 by Harper Voyager, Awakened is a sci-fi thriller about an express train in New York that, after years of waiting, connects cities across the Hudson River. When the train finally launches, it arrives covered in blood as methane fills the tunnels, the structure floods and the terrifying danger of what killed all the passengers remains unknown.

Murray will adapt the book for television alongside horror writer Darren Wearmouth (Sixth Cycle). IDW will package the scripted drama with the hopes of scoring a straight-to-series pickup. Murray and IDW Media Holdings CEO Ted Adams and IDW Entertainment president David Ozer will exec produce.

"Murray has a tremendously talented creative mind, which is evident from the huge success of Impractical Jokers. He has brought that genius into publishing with his first novel Awakened,” Ozer said. “The book is a beautiful fit for our development strategy, blending humor with shocking discoveries and high action exploits, creating a riveting thriller in the process. We are very much looking forward to working with James and Darren Wearmouth on developing Awakened for genre fans worldwide.”

Murray stars and exec produces TruTV's Impractical Jokers, which is now in its sixth season. He also serves as senior vp development for NorthSouth Productions and tours with New York-based comedy troupe The Tenderloins.

IDW's TV credits include BBC America's Dirk Gently, now in its second season and the beloved Locke and Key, which has a pilot order at Hulu, among others.