DreamWorks eyes 'Xombie' pitch

Zombie cop project from scribe Will Beall

DreamWorks, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci could be walking with a "Xombie."

The studio is in negotiations to buy "Xombie," a pitch about a zombie who is also a policeman, from cop-turned-scribe Will Beall, with Kurtzman and Orci in talks to produce.

Beall, repped by CAA and Management 360, also is adapting his debut novel "L.A. Rex," about a policeman patrolling the gang-ridden area of the 77th Division in South Los Angeles, for producer Scott Rudin.

"Xombie" is based on a Devil's Due comic book by James Farr, itself based on his online animated series. Farr's creation centers on a zombie cop named Dirge who attempts to saves humanity's remnants, particularly a young girl named Zoe, from evil zombies.

DreamWorks is in negotiations to acquire the source material. The logline for the movie version is being kept under wraps.

If deals are closed, Cindi Rice and John Frank Rosenblum of Epic Level Entertainment would exec produce along with Kurtzman/Orci's Bobby Cohen and Steven T. Puri.

Beall is a former beat cop and anti-gang policeman in the 77th Division who recently became a homicide detective; he continues to serve in the LAPD while writing.

Like vampires, zombies are gaining currency in Hollywood, with Sony set to release Woody Harrelson zombie-comedy "Zombieland" next month. DreamWorks is developing "Rainbow's Bridge," based on the Japanese pic "Resurrection," which centers on a group of the undead as they return to the lives they once led.

In addition to writing tentpoles such as "Star Trek" and "Transformers," Kurtzman and Orci have taken on a number of projects as producers, boarding, among others, a family-action movie based on the View-Master toy that's been set up at DreamWorks, and "Matt Helm," a government thriller set up at Amblin and Paramount.

Steven Zeitchik reported from New York; Borys Kit reported from Los Angeles.