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EC Comics partners with Hivemind for TV/film deal

By Ernie Estrella
EC Comics Weird Fantasy No. 21 Cover

One of the most cherished comics catalogues, EC Comics, is being developed into a newly announced television series called Weird Fantasy. The show is inspired by the science-fiction/fantasy comic of the same name that like many classic works of that 1950s dealt with themes of racial equality, anti-war advocacy, environmentalism, and other social issues.

HIghlights include the timeless Civil Rights era story, "Judgement Day," by William Gaines, Al Feldstein and Joe Orlando. Other comics greats such as Wally Wood and Harvey Kurtzman worked on Weird Fantasy along with other many EC titles.

Hivemind is the production company that is behind Netflix's adaptation of The Witcher, The Expanse for Amazon, and Scary Stories to Tell In the Dark for CBS Films. They are also developing Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino's creator-owned Gideon Falls into a television series.

William Gaines Senate Committee

The second project of this partnership will be a feature film-biopic on the life of EC publisher and MAD Magazine founder William M. Gaines, whose life included a Congressional investigation against the comics industry and launching MAD Magazine in 1952.

Both projects will be produced by Cathy and Corey Mifsud (Gaines' daughter and grandson), Sean Daniel, Jason F. Brown and newly appointed VP Brand & Content Strategy at Hivemind, Hunter Gorinson who was last at Valiant Entertainment who helped get a 2020 feature film for Bloodshot starring Vin Diesel, directed by Dave Wilson and a screenplay written by Eric Heisserer underway.  

In 1954 the US Congressional inquiry looked into whether or not comics were linked to juvenile delinquency. The publication of Seduction of the Innocent was written and published by psychiatrist Fredric Wertham who came to the conclusion that comics were a negative influence on the American youth. At this time, EC Comics were a major comic book publisher, producer of genre comics covering horror, crime, and Gaines was asked to come in and speak on defense of the comics industry, specifically the violence portrayed.

EC Comics Judgement Day

As a result, the industry created the self-policing Comics Code Authority. Gaines work at EC Comics remains a major influential figure in the medium of comics and a cultural touchstone for filmmakers and titan creatives such as Stephen King, George Lucas and George R.R. Martin. His work in championing free speech and being at the forefront of the American counterculture remains just a portion of his large legacy. Gaines passed away in 1992 and was postumously inducted to the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame in 1993.

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