Zane, bestselling erotica author, entrepreneur and publisher of S&S/Atria’s Strebor Books imprint, is teaming up with Verge Entertainment, a New York City transmedia production house founded by Shawn Martinbrough, Joe Illidge and Milo Stone. Zane will work with Verge to create at least two “long-form” projects that will be developed across multiple media platforms.
“We’ve been talking to her for a few months and put our heads together. We’re working on two projects," llidge said. The collaboration is focused on producing “long-form stories that involve politics and are set in New York City. We’re [Verge cofounders] native New Yorkers and we can bring an authentic sense of New York to these projects," he explained.
One project, he said, will be grounded in Zane’s specialty, “romantic erotic relationships with a twist.” The second project, he told PW, is more “high concept,” and will build on the Verge partner’s background in action, adventure and gaming properties. This project Illidge said, will also be “centered in New York City and speak to our background in fantastic, dramatic material. We’re after a creative balance between what Verge is known for and with Zane’s material.”
The final form of the projects have not been determined: “it’s all transmedia, they have multi-platform potential,” he said.
“Zane has a vast body of work in book publishing, TV and film and we have more than 20 years experience working with major comics characters,” Illidge said. “She understands that comics are also part of the larger pop culture world. This collaboration is a way to develop dramatic IP that will show off the talents of both parties,” he said.
Verge Entertainment is a production house that creates projects in comics, films, TV, videogames and other media. Principals include Martinbrough, veteran comics artist on a variety of properties for DC, Marvel and Image Comics. He’s currently drawing Thief of Thieves, a bestselling graphic novel series written By Robert Kirkman, creator the wildly popular Walking Dead comics and TV series. Illidge previously edited Batman and other top series at DC Comics and Stone is a writer, film director and videogame developer.
Illidge and Martinbrough are currently co-writing The Ren, a graphic novel set during the Harlem Renaissance, which will be drawn by Grey Williamson. The book will be published by First Second in 2015.
"I am very excited to be working with Verge Entertainment to produce and co-write two of their original properties for television,” Zane told PW.