Paramount Animation is going to the dogs.
The animation arm has picked up the rights to upcoming horror comic book Stray Dogs, setting Game Night scribe Mark Perez to write the script. Gary Dauberman, the horror filmmaker who counts the Annabelle and It movies among his writing credits, is set to produce via his banner, Coin Operated.
Details about the comic, created by Tony Fleecs and Trish Forstner, are being kept on a leash, but it is being described as “Silence of the Lambs meets Lady and the Tramp.”
Dauberman, in a statement to Heat Vision, didn’t elaborate on the premise but hammered home the horror nature of the project.
“So much of what makes horror work is taking something innocent and twisting it into something scary,” Dauberman stated. “Like a doll in Annabelle. Or a clown in It. And that’s what we want to do in Stray Dogs: take animation and twist it into something terrifying by using it to explore a really dark story. For me, the project combines a lot of my passions: animation, horror and, well, dogs.”
Image Comics will release Stray Dogs in 2021.
Dauberman has enough horror experience to make a dog howl in the night. He wrote the scripts for the worldwide hit adaptations of Stephen King‘s It and became a key player in New Line’s The Conjuring scaryverse when he wrote the script for Annabelle. He wrote the sequel, Annabelle: Creation, then wrote and made his directorial debut with Annabelle Comes Home. Other film credits include writer and executive producer on The Conjuring entry The Nun and producer on The Curse of La Llorona. On his docket, Dauberman is set as writer-director of Stephen King adaptation Salem’s Lot and as writer and a producer on the remake of Korean zombie thriller Train to Busan.
On top of writing the ensemble comedy hit Game Night, Perez penned the college comedy Accepted. He recently reteamed with Game Night’s Jason Bateman for two projects: Movie Night, a spec script set up at Netflix with Bateman set to direct and John Cena to star, and Superworld, set up at Warner Bros. with Bateman also set to direct.
Fleecs and Forstner first met when they were paired for IDW comic series My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic. Fleecs is also known for his autobiographical comic In My Lifetime and Jeff Steinberg: Champion of Earth.
Perez is repped by ICM Partners and Hansen Jacobson while Fleecs is repped by Industry Entertainment and Felker Toczek.