IDW Entertainment declared yesterday that the award-winning, fan-favorite property Locke & Key is being developed as a television series and that author and creator Joe Hill will be writing the pilot and serving as an executive producer.
Locke & Key has earned both awards and acclaim during its five-year run. Following the eponymous Locke family as they encounter magic beyond belief and evils beyond redemption, Locke & Key swiftly won over readers and had since become a staple in introducing new readers to the medium. With the series readjusted in dozens of languages across the globe, and more than a million copies sold worldwide, Locke & Key is an understandable preference to make the transition to the screen.
New York Times bestselling author, Joe Hill, has continually captivated readers through his gripping novels and award-winning comic series. Rupturing onto the scene with his debut collection of short stories 20th Century Ghosts, Joe Hill has proceeded to inspire audiences with the novels Heart-Shaped Box, N0S4A2, and Horns, accommodated into a feature-length film in 2013, starring Daniel Radcliffe. His forthcoming novel The Fireman debuts later this month. In addition to Locke & Key, his comic series The Cape, Thumbprint, Wraith, and the upcoming series Tales From The Darkside have all been published by IDW Entertainment.
I love this story, the seven years I spent working on Locke & Key was the happiest creative experience of my life and there still isn’t a day when I do not think about those characters and miss visiting with them. The six books of the series are very like six seasons of a cable tv show, and so it feels only natural to bring that world to the little screen and to see if we can’t scare the pants off viewers everywhere.
Ted Adams and David Ozer from IDW Entertainment, together with David Alpert and Rick Jacobs from Circle of Confusion (The Walking Dead) will serve as executive producers along with Joe Hill.
Having Joe at the helm of the pilot ensures that the series will hold true to the brand that fans around the world have come to love. Locke & Key is a true global franchise.
IDW Publishing released the 37-issue Locke & Key graphic novel, written by Joe Hill and illustrated by Gabe Rodriguez, in 2008. It follows the story of Nina Locke and her three children, Tyler, Kinsey, and Bode, who, after the murder of the children’s father, attempt to rebuild their lives at the Keyhouse, a mysterious mansion in Lovecraft, Massachusetts. There (and in keeping with the haunted house subgenre), they discover magical keys that open portals to another dimension. However, what lies on the other side is far from friendly.
Given the scope of the graphic novel, it makes sense that its writer would opt for a small screen adaptation versus a feature-length film. By nature, the medium is not rushed, allowing for more creativity and time spent on narrative devices, such as plot, motif, and character development. I, therefore, would not be surprised if a streaming behemoth like Netflix, which blossoms on the kind of creative freedom that can only operate outside the bounds of network television, ultimately picks up the adaption. Even if people have never read the graphic novel, the popularity of panic-inducing shows like American Horror Story demonstrates that there is an audience for it.
IDW Entertainment is presently developing Locke & Key as a straight to series and will maintain worldwide rights to the project.