A former top HBO executive who struck out in her efforts to get "The Walking Dead" for the pay-cable channel has become involved in a new project from "Walking Dead" originator Robert Kirkman — but this time it’s for HBO rival Cinemax.
Writing on Deadline.com, Nellie Andreeva reports that Sue Naegle — who watched AMC’s "The Walking Dead" become the biggest scripted show on television after she tried unsuccessfully to reel it in for HBO — is on board with Cinemax’s "Outcast," an exorcism drama from Kirkman. The project is one of the first as a producer for Naegle, the former entertainment president at HBO.
"Naegle has a relationship with Kirkman," Andreeva writes. "She is known for her love for supernatural and horror fare and is a fan of Kirkman’s graphic novel ‘The Walking Dead.’ As an HBO development executive, she went aggressively after the property and had talks with Kirkman."
Andreeva adds: "In his pilot writing debut, Kirkman penned ‘Outcast’ on spec for ‘The Walking Dead’ international partner Fox International Channels, which developed the project internally before taking it out. I hear Naegle, who was still at HBO at the time, read the script and recommended it to her colleague Kary Antholis, whose team had already been actively pursuing it."
Naegle championed Kirkman’s "Walking Dead" while at HBO, and the channel reportedly came close to a deal for the show but ultimately came up short.
"AMC snagged the comic book for what would become the biggest series on television," Andreeva writes, adding that Naegle "now will get to work with Kirkman on ‘Outcast,’ on which the two serve as executive producers alongside David Alpert of Circle of Confusion. The gig dovetails with her producing deal at HBO."
The report adds: "Based on Kirkman/Skybound’s recently announced comic book by the same name, ‘Outcast’ follows Kyle Barnes, a young man who has been plagued by possession since he was a child. Now an adult, he embarks on a journey to find answers but what he uncovers could mean the end of life on Earth as we know it."