'Ramayan' is royalty for Liquid, Mandalay


Mandalay Pictures, Mark Canton and Liquid Comics are teaming to bring Liquid's graphic novel "Ramayan 3392 AD" to the big screen.

John Collee has been tapped to adapt the story, a reimagining of an ancient Hindu epic. The action-adventure centers on Prince Rama — a legendary blue-skinned warrior who in mythology is an incarnation of the god Vishnu — as he fights to save his beloved from demon forces.

The comic also is being developed as a multiplayer online game by Sony Online Entertainment.

Canton will produce alongside Mandalay's Cathy Schulman. Gotham Chopra and Sharad Devarajan of Liquid Comics will executive produce what will be billed a Mandalay Pictures/Atmosphere Entertainment production.

Liquid seems to be rising out of the ashes of Virgin Comics, a team-up between Virgin Books and India-based comics publisher Gotham Entertainment. Virgin Comics, under Devarajan and Suresh Seetharaman, shuttered in August with the hopes of restructuring its business and consolidating its operations in a Los Angeles base.

Liquid is still active on the movie front and has the comic "Virulents" set up at Regency and "The Gamekeeper" set up at Warner Bros. with Joel Silver producing and Guy Ritchie attached to direct.

Canton, whose recent credits include "300" and "The Spiderwick Chronicles," is in preproduction on "War of Gods" and the new "Fame" movie.

Mandalay recently picked up the graphic novel "Julius," a modern reimagining of Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar" from Oni Press. F. Gary Gray is attached to direct.

Collee, repped by CAA, worked on "Happy Feet" and "Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World." He is writing "Guardians of Ga'Hoole" for director Zack Snyder.

Mandalay's Schulman and Scarlett Lacey as well as Atmosphere's David Hopwoodare overseeing. (partialdiff)