Post Marvel employment for sibling filmmaker duo Anthony and Joe Russo isn’t exactly running dry. The two have a raft of TV and film production titles pending in the last five years and on Monday, they’re officially adding Magic: The Gathering to their workload going forward.
The brothers are pairing up with
Netflix, Wizards of The Coast, and Hasbro’s Allspark Animation to develop an animated series based on the longstanding trading card game which took off more than 25 years ago. The Russos will create an original story for the show expanding on the Planeswalkers – unique magic-wielding heroes and villains as they contend with stakes larger than any one world can hold.
Created in 1993, the Magic franchise has connected with over 38 million fans over the last 25 years and has been published in eleven languages and played in over 70 countries.
The Russos will exec produce the series with animation work by Bardel Entertainment. Much of the creative team on the series will be comprised of crew spanning TV and film credits like Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Batman: The Animated Series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Firefly, Agent Carter, Ultimate Spider-Man, and The Lego Movies.
Octopie will oversee production with Todd Makurath, Eric Calderon, and Dave Newberg producing, and Mike Larocca and Isaac Krauss serving as exec producers. Henry Gilroy (Star Wars Rebels, Star Wars: The Clone Wars) and Jose Molina (The Tick, Agent Carter) will serve as lead writers and co-exec produce with Yoriaki Mochizuki serving as supervising director and co-exec producer.
“We have been huge fans and players of Magic: The Gathering for as long as it has been around, so being able to help bring these stories to life through animation is a true passion project for us,” said Joe and Anthony Russo.
“Working with Joe and Anthony, Wizards of the Coast, and Netflix on such a universally cherished brand is a real highlight for our studio.” said Isaac Krauss, CEO of Octopie. “Our goal is to not only tell a compelling story leveraging Magic: The Gathering’s incredible body of work, but to also push the medium and perception of storytelling through animation. This series will cross the genres of suspenseful thriller, horror, and drama with deeply developed characters the likes of which are not often seen in animation.”
“More fans are enjoying Magic now than at any time in its 25-year history thanks to the enduring popularity of the tabletop game and our latest release War of the Spark, as well as the incredible success of our new digital game, Magic: The Gathering Arena.” said Chris Cocks, President of Wizards of the Coast. “We’re thrilled to collaborate with Joe and Anthony Russo to bring Magic: The Gathering’s rich and diverse cast of characters and worlds to Netflix in a way that will delight our many fans and those new to the franchise.”
“Magic is a beloved global franchise with a massively engaged fan base that has only continued to grow over the last 25 years,” said John Derderian, head of Anime programming for Netflix. “There’s no one better suited to bring this story to audiences around the world than Joe and Anthony Russo, whose talent for genre storytelling is unmatched, as demonstrated by their central role in creating some of the biggest box office hits of all time.”