Shout! Factory and Vancouver-based Arcana Studios have inked a North American distribution deal for the forthcoming animated film “Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom,” the companies announced today. Based on Bruce Brown’s popular graphic novel, the film, written, directed, and produced by Sean Patrick O’Reilly (“Pixies”), will receive multi-platform U.S. and Canadian releases from Shout! Factory in 2016.
The timely acquisition capitalizes on the current vogue for big-screen comic book adaptations, as well as renewed interest in author H.P. Lovecraft, whose work inspired a thicket of allusions in the first season HBO’s “True Detective.” The graphic novel introduces Lovecraft’s particular brand of eerie fiction—including the famed book of magic known as the Necronomicon—to a new generation, following young Howard through a portal and into a dangerous frozen world, where he befriends a monster named Spot.
The move also signals further diversification for both Arcana, which opened a cross-platform animation division in 2012, and Shout! Factory, which has previously released complete Blu-ray box sets of beloved television series such as “Pee-wee’s Playhouse” and “Mr. Bean.”