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May 4, 2009

Doug TenNapel + Hugh Jackman = Ghostopolis

Doug TenNapel -- animator, graphic novelist, video-game designer and occasional collaborator with one of my favorite musicians of all time, Terry Scott Taylor -- continues to rack up the movie deals. The Hollywood Reporter says his newest graphic novel, Ghostopolis, has been picked up by Disney -- and Wolverine star Hugh Jackman is set to produce and star in the film version:
The story centers on a man who works for the government's Supernatural Immigration Task Force. His job is to send ghosts who have escaped into our world back to Ghostopolis. When a living boy accidentally is sent to the other side, the agent must team with a female ghost (and former flame) to bring him back.
This would be at least the fourth movie deal that TenNapel has made in the last few years -- Paramount has Monster Zoo, New Regency has Creature Tech and Universal has Tommysaurus Rex -- but this marks the first time that an actor has been attached to one of them, as far as I can recall.

Whether any of these films will get the green light remains an open question; I gather TenNapel's stories can be pretty bizarre, which might make them difficult to adapt for the big screen. And there may be other issues, too. Two years ago, Christian columnist Terry Mattingly wrote a profile of TenNapel and his big-screen ambitions, and noted:

Part of the challenge, admitted TenNapel, is capturing his blend of fantasy and Christian faith. Some critics wish he would quit weaving sin, redemption, politics and science into his plots. Then there are church people who think he should be drawing evangelistic, "Christian comics" and avoiding his occasional blasts of sci-fi potty humor.
For what it's worth, Christianity Today's sister magazines have profiled TenNapel at least twice, albeit quite a few years ago. If memory serves, Computing Today ran a cover story on him that is no longer online, back around the time he released the computer game The Neverhood (1996); and there was also a brief blurb on TenNapel and his wife in a 1997 issue of Marriage Partnership.

TenNapel also blogs occasionally at the conservative movie site Big Hollywood.

Related Tags: creature tech, ghostopolis, monster zoo, tommysaurus rex