EXCLUSIVE: Imagine Entertainment, from Ron Howard and Brian Grazer, is partnering with Wattpad Webtoon Studios to develop a feature-length adaptation of Love advice from the Grand Duke of Hellthe hit comic book from the creator known as Unfins, which has so far garnered over 160 million views on the digital comic publishing platform, Webtoon.
Attached to the scripted, live-action feature is Cody Blue Snider, a veteran of the commercial and music video world best known for his award-winning shorts. All that remains It is April Fools’ Day. Imagine will produce alongside Wattpad Webtoon Studios, with Karen Lunder and Allan Mandelbaum overseeing Imagine, and Aron Levitz, David Madden and Lindsey Weems Ramey overseeing Wattpad Webtoon.
The Unfins Ringo Award-nominated comic tells the story of Paul, an unhappy high school student, madly in love with the “girl next door”. After mistakenly summoning the Grand Duke of Hell, Astaroth, Paul offers his soul in exchange for winning his love interest’s heart. But unfortunately, Astaroth turns out to be as ignorant as Paul in the art of love.
In a joint statement, Imagine Features President Lunder and Senior Vice President Mandelbaum called Love advice “a bold and irresistible take on the romantic comedy that is both nostalgic and truly original.” The duo added that they are “thrilled to join forces with Cody Blue Snider and the Wattpad WEBTOON Studios team to bring this story and Cody’s singular vision to audiences everywhere.”
Wattpad Webtoon Studios’ head of global film, Lindsey Weems Ramey, highlighted the comic’s appeal as “a truly unique story, with subversive dark humor and a surprisingly sweet romance at its heart.” The executive continued: “This charming, twisted romantic comedy is unlike anything else, and fans around the world have fallen in love with this story of the unlikeliest love expert. This story needs a world-class creative team, so we’re thrilled to work alongside the team at Imagine and Cody Blue Snider to bring Astaroth and the rest of these unforgettable characters to life.”
Recently inking an exclusive multi-year deal with Amazon Studios, Imagine is heading into this year’s Emmys with 14 nominations for projects including Judy Blume forever, Fire Island, The other two, The Mrs. Pat Show, Bono & The Edge: a kind of homecoming with Dave Letterman, My next guest needs no introduction with David Letterman and Volodymyr Zelenskyy, A black lady sketch show, Light and MagicIt is Emily in Paris. The company’s recent releases include the comedy-drama Apple TV+ The beanie bubble and documentation The supermodels, made for the same streamer. Among his upcoming projects are Eddie Murphy’s Christmas comedy Candy Cane Clue on Prime Video, Apple TV+ documentary series The Dynasty: New England Patriotsand an untitled doc about Muppets creator Jim Henson.
The global fan-facing entertainment and publishing arm of online publishers Wattpad and Webtoon, which as of July had a combined audience of more than 182 million, Wattpad Webtoon Studios brings together technology, a diverse new generation of creators and passionate global fandoms to create data-driven, audience-driven TV shows, films, and books. The company currently has more than 100 film and TV projects in development or production around the world. Among them are Hawk, with MCU scribe Christopher Yost, based on the Wattpad sci-fi webnovel; A.Rasen Gremoryland with Roy Lee’s Vertigo Entertainment; Deanna Cameron web novel thriller What happened that nightadapted by Children of menDavid Arata; and TL Bodine’s supernatural thriller The hunting dogadapted by Angela LaManna (Raised by wolves). Wattpad Webtoon is also developing an animated series based on the Webtoon sensation History of Olympuswhich has accumulated over 1.5 billion views to date.