For many long-time comic lovers, the medium allows for a movie that can do literally anything. What would cost billions in a film budget can be done with the stroke of a pen. Or a digital stylus, as it were.
Now a new article from Bleeding Cool is mentioning that many are reporting that Vertigo is only accepting pitches that could work well on a television budget. While they are not revealing who the sources of this information is in detail, therefore it really just remains a “rumor” at this time, they are saying clearly that this is a part of how they consider the possible success of a property.
Where I have had reports of certain creators being told that pitches for comic books set in the past and the far future, or a strange and distant land are out. A “period” comic book was rejected because they wouldn’t have the budget. The budget? For costumes? In a comic book? The truth emerged – any possible TV adaptation wouldn’t have the budget. They are looking for comic books set in the present day, in New York or LA, say, that would make for a smooth and cheap transition to television.
There have been some creators, such as David Baillie, have noted that this was not their experience, it is an unfortunate rumor. It does, however, make sense, as the cost of producing floppy comics increases and the importance of licensing money and cross-promotion become critical to the financial well being of producing these books. This became especially true in the cross-success of indie books like Walking Dead, and now we are seeing these indie and alternative comic properties being turned into highly-anticipated titles. Just take a look at Preacher and Outcast.
As we head into the fourth quarter and the twelve new titles that Vertigo will be releasing, we will have to see for ourselves whether the new titles are “budget approved.”