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SYFY WIRE Dan Harmon

Thank gods! Rick and Morty's Dan Harmon sets animated Fox series inspired by Greek mythology

By Josh Weiss
Dan Harmon Zeus

And then along came Zeus! Dan Harmon, creator of cult comedy hits Community and Rick and Morty, has found his next comedy venture...nearly 3,000 years in the past.

Variety has brought word down from Mount Olympus that Harmon's first project under his overall deal with Fox is an animated series steeped in the culture and mythology of ancient Greece — a slice of early human history that inspired such cultural touchstones as Disney's Hercules and Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson novels. The show, which is eyeing a 2022 premiere, doesn't have an official title just yet, but is said to focus on "a flawed family of humans, gods, and monsters that tries to run one of the world’s first cities without killing each other."

"Leave it to Dan Harmon to turn the mythos of early Greek civilization into remarkably sharp commentary on today’s politics, celebrity and pop culture,” Michael Thorn, president of entertainment for Fox Entertainment, said in a statement published by Variety. “This project is an incredibly irreverent family comedy as told by one of the town’s most inventive storytellers. We are proud to be partnered with Dan on this series, which strengthens our hold on the animation space and, as we continue to build Fox Entertainment, marks an important first step for us with our first fully-owned scripted property.”

While Harmon co-created Rick and Morty with Justin Roiland for Adult Swim, the duo are going their separate ways on subsequent animated shows for different networks and/or streaming platforms. Roiland, for instance, teamed up with Rick and Morty writer/producer McMahan (also the mastermind of Star Trek: Lower Decks) for Hulu's Solar Opposites. That said, Harmon and Roiland are still collaborating on their sci-fi brainchild, which scored an order for 70 additional episodes back in 2018.

Before Rick and Morty, Harmon cut his teeth creating the ambitious NBC sitcom Community, which took the set-up of a college study group and used it to spin out everything from big sci-fi homages to zombie horror tales. It's streaming now on Netflix.

"Before joining the network ranks, I was an independent producer who had the opportunity to work with Dan on one of my very first projects. His singular voice, tenor, and conviction to always deliver the unexpected in the stories he tells, let me know right away that he was a special talent," Thorn said when Harmon's Fox deal was first announced last summer. "As one of the most prolific creators working in the business today ... there's no better creative partner to have than Dan Harmon."