With everyone from frat boys to soccer moms clearing their Sunday nights to watch “The Walking Dead," AMC is clearly enjoying their investment in creator/writer Robert Kirkman's zombie hit, and are now seeking to continue that success with an adaptation of another Kirkman comic property.
According to Deadline, AMC is starting development on “Thief of Thieves,” based off a recent comic series from Kirkman and Chic Eglee, who will act as showrunner for the adaptation. Written by Nick Spencer and drawn by Shawn Martinbrough, the comic and series follows Conrad Paulson, a master thief seeking a way out of his profession to be there for his ex-wife and estranged child. Once he manages to break free, however, he finds the thrill that the job provides essential, and so he returns to claim riches from other burglars flush with wealth.
In a recent statement, Kirkman explained his reasons for the show. “Much like 'The Walking Dead' brought horror to television in a unique and groundbreaking way, I feel 'Thief of Thieves' can do the same thing for heist stories, showing the humanity of all the characters, including the criminals.” The humanistic viewpoint has been one of the standout reasons for the success of “The Walking Dead," but whereas that show gained notice for taking its time with a concept previously only explored over 90-minute films, “Thief of Thieves” already has many TV contemporaries trying the same things.
A prime example dates back fairly recently to 2006, when FX attempted a very similar plot in their mini-series “Thief,” starring the fantastic actor Andre Braugher in the lead. As a reader of the Kirkman comic, though, he has displayed his unique way with character thus far, and “Thief of Thieves” does employ an intriguing non-linear structure that should keep things interesting. It's clear the show will have a harder time pulling in uninitiated viewers with the concept, but the fanbase built up around “The Walking Dead” should prove loyal, provided Kirkman delivers a compelling end product.
Kirkman will again join David Alpert for exec-producing roles on “Thief of Thieves,” which should begin pre-production soon.