Legendary Creator Frank Miller and Writer/Producer Thomas Wheeler to Reimagine Arthurian Legend, From the Perspective of the Lady of the Lake, In Debut Young Adult Novel
Cursed will be illustrated by Miller and will release in Fall 2019 from
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
NEW YORK, March 22 —Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers will publish the debut young adult novel by legendary artist, director, writer, and producer Frank Miller, who will illustrate, and acclaimed writer/producer Thomas Wheeler, who will write. Tentatively titled Cursed, the project reimagines the King Arthur legend from the point of view of sixteen-year-old Nimue—the young woman who first wielded Excalibur and became the all-powerful Lady of the Lake. Cursed will feature full-color and black and white illustrations, and will be published in hardcover, audio, and eBook. Justin Chanda, Vice President and Publisher of Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, acquired North American and audio rights from Dorian Karchmar and Jamie Carr of William Morris Endeavor, and will edit the book.
“I have always been entranced by the mythological Arthur story—and by Nimue, in particular,” Frank Miller said. “It can be interpreted in any number of ways—from a delightful children’s story, as in The Sword in the Stone, to a terrifying interpretation like Excalibur. This tale represents an incredible opportunity and an exciting challenge for me as an illustrator, and I’m excited to collaborate on the story with Thomas Wheeler. I inherited a collection of antique children’s books from my mother, and I’ve always wanted to have a crack at it myself. This project is a dream come true.”
“I am honored and humbled to be working with the living legend Frank Miller on Cursed,” Thomas Wheeler said. “I cannot think of a writer-artist who has had a more formative impact on my growth as a storyteller. His characters, images, and dark worlds have haunted and delighted me since I was ten years old. To be a witness and accomplice to Frank’s first journey into the Arthurian mythos is the very definition of a dream come true. Together we hope to shake the foundations of this beloved mythology and in the process create a new hero for a new age.”
This visually stunning and altogether new take on the classic tale is a coming-of-age adventure that takes place in the Dark Ages and centers on Nimue, the daughter of a high priestess, who is blessed with a powerful connection to the Feywild—the living energy of the forest. Over the course of her journey, Nimue will become the symbol of courage and rebellion against the terrifying Red Paladins and a corrupt king. She will also befriend a young sellsword named Arthur, with no inkling of the role he will play in their shared arc of history.
“Frank and Tom have reimagined and reinvigorated a legendary story by shining a spotlight on a heroine who has never gotten her full due,” said Chanda. “This is an empowering, thrilling, and relevant tale for our times.”
Frank Miller is regarded as one of the most influential and awarded professionals in the entertainment industry today, known for his intense, hard-boiled storytelling and gritty noir aesthetic across comics, graphic novels, and film. He is best known for his comic book stories and graphic novels, including Sin City, 300, Ronin, Daredevil: Born Again, and The Dark Knight Returns. He also created the comic book characters Elektra, for Marvel Comics’ Daredevil series, and Carrie Kelley, for DC Comics. Miller made his feature film directorial debut in 2005 with Sin City, the adaptation of his graphic novel, which he codirected with Robert Rodriguez, along with a sequel, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For. In 2007, Miller served as an executive producer on Zack Snyder’s blockbuster 300, also based on his own graphic novel, which went on to gross over $456 million worldwide. In 2008, he wrote and directed The Spirit, an action fantasy based on the Will Eisner comic book series. In 2015, Miller was inducted into the Eisner Awards Hall of Fame for his lifetime of contributions to the industry.
Thomas Wheeler is a producer, author of the adult novel The Arcanum, and co-writer of Warner Brs’ Lego: Ninjago Movie. He wrote the screenplay for Puss in Boots, a Shrek spin-off, and is currently penning its sequel. He recently sold his original screenplay, Vostok, to Paramount Pictures, with Michael Bay attached to direct. He just completed the script for a live-action feature, Dora the Explorer, with James Bobin attached to direct and a 2019 release date, also for Paramount Pictures. In TV, Wheeler has developed and produced pilots for The CW, NBC, and FOX, as well as the ABC pilot, Captain Cook’s Extraordinary Atlas. He was a consulting producer on the NBC series Surface, as the creator/executive producer of the critically acclaimed maxi-series Empire, and the creator/executive producer of the superhero drama The Cape for NBC.
Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, one of the leading children’s book publishers in the world, comprises the following imprints: Aladdin, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Beach Lane Books, Libros para niños, Little Simon®, Margaret K. McElderry Books, Paula Wiseman Books, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, Simon Pulse, and Simon Spotlight®. While maintaining an extensive award-winning backlist, the division continues to publish acclaimed and bestselling books for children of all ages. Simon & Schuster publishes numerous Caldecott, Newbery, and National Book Award winners. For more information about Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, visit our website at www.simonandschuster.com.
Lisa Moraleda, Director of Publicity
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