Margaret Atwood’s ‘War Bears’ Comic to be Adapted into Animated Series

war bears

Margaret Atwood is best know as the author of Handmaid’s Tale, a critically acclaimed book later on adapted into equally successful HBO series. Her graphic novel, War Bears, is now also headed to television, as WOW! Unlimited Media has officially optioned the comic for development as an animated series.

The comic tells the unique story of a young comic book artist during World War II, who creates a series about Oursonette – Nazi-fighting bear-human hybrid character. On the collaboration with the artist Ken Steacy, who illustrated the comic, Atwood said:

“Ken Steacy illustrated War Bears given his World War II interests and high standards of visual accuracy. We collaborated — although the main work on the script is his — and the rest is history. Comics history. How delightful that Ken is now working with Michael Hirsh and WOW! Media to bring our beloved she-bear, Oursonette, to life.”

Steacy doesn’t hide his excitement either and admits he is “absolutely thrilled” to be working both with WOW! Media and Atwood:

“Collaborating with Margaret Atwood on War Bears was a superlative experience as a visual storyteller. In the graphic novel’s afterword I expressed my hope that Oursonette would make good on her promise to return some day – I’m absolutely thrilled to be working with WOW! Media to fulfill  that promise!”


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Michael Hirsh, CEO of WOW! Unlimited Media comments on the matter too, saying he “jumped at the opportunity to work with these two incredibly talented artists to develop this exciting, historical graphic novel into a series”.

War Bears first appeared as a short story by Atwood with Steacy’s illustrations in celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary in The Globe and Mail. Few years back, Atwood talked to Entertainment Weekly and explained the genesis of her comic, and that the real story is less about Oursonette, and more about her creators and their struggle in the short-lived comics industry of World War II-era Canada.

“They were black and white comics, because it was forbidden at that time to import colored American comics into Canada, because of paper shortages and the war effort. I’ve never quite understood that, but it was forbidden. On V-E Day, everybody knew that now everything was going to change. Back would come the American comics, which they did, and away would go the black and white ones they’d been drawing, which they did.”

War Bears is still in development, and the release date is yet to be announced.

Source: Deadline

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