Beano Studios and DC Thomson launch Emanata Studios to adapt comic books for film & TV

For the first time in its more than 100-year history, DC Thomson is opening up its entire comic archive to be developed for international audiences of all ages. Well-known titles and characters including ‘Hotspur,’ ‘Spellbound,’ ‘Mandy,’ ‘Beano’ and best-selling teen magazine ‘Jackie’ are being reimagined by a diverse range of new and established talent for newly created Emanata Studios, a division of Beano Studios.

Chief Creative Officer Mark Talbot will lead Emanata Studios, with a team of producers working alongside him, and he will continue to report into James Clayton, Chairman and David Guppy, CEO of Beano Studios. Emanata Studios will have offices in both Dundee, home of the comic archive, and London and is represented in the US by CAA.

Talbot commented: “This is an incredibly unique place to be. This one-of-a-kind archive has preserved more than 2000 stories and characters and Emanata is the perfect studio to reawaken them. For those who already know them, and new audiences ready to be entertained, we can’t wait to reintroduce the world to Bunty, The Supercats, Nick Jolly the Flying Highway Man alongside the incredible Beano IP at our disposal.”

Emanata Studios also has an impressive range of projects in the works in the UK across drama, comedy and animation for adults and YA in the UK which include:

  • A UKTV comedy live action pilot script has been commissioned based on an iconic comic character from ‘Dandy’.
  • Screen Scotland, backed by the Scottish Government and The National Lottery, has funded a drama, written by Rae Brunton, based on character ‘Nick Jolly the Flying Highway Man’ who featured in the ‘Hotspur’ comic.
  • The development of a live action drama with each of Sky Studios and Drama Republic, and two adult animations with MTV Entertainment Group.

Beano Studios Chairman James Clayton added: “With sole ownership of the UK’s largest comic book archive and ever-increasing demand for premium content, it’s the perfect time for Emanata to renew these treasured stories and characters for modern audiences.”

Plus, Emanata Studios is excited to announce the launch of its 2022 New Writers’ Bursary. Submissions will open in January, via the Emanata website, for a bursary of £30k which will be awarded to three writers from underrepresented groups to write a pilot script based on IP from the DC Thomson archive. Previous recipients include Adjani Salmon, Ameir Brown, Lara Peake and Leila Navabi, with one project in development with a UK broadcaster.

Full details and more information can be found on the Emanata website


The meaning of Emanata

The word Emanata was coined by the American cartoonist Mort Walker to describe the dots and lines which emanate from cartoon characters and was chosen to reflect the huge publishing archive being developed by the studio.

About Emanata Studios

Emanata Studios produces the very best film and TV content for British and global audiences. With exclusive access to the UK’s largest comic book archive, it creates drama, comedy and animation with diverse voices and creative talent to reimagine characters and stories that reflect the world of modern audiences.

About Beano Studios

Beano Studios is a rebellious multi-media business powered by data and insight. The Studio produces the legendary Beano comic and annual alongside diverse content across the award-winning, theatrical and live experiences, such as the current exhibition Beano: The Art of Breaking the Rules which is running at Somerset House until March, as well licensed products and the Beano Shop. The Studio also produced the International Emmy nominated Dennis & Gnasher: Unleashed! which has been sold to 90+ countries reaching over 200 million people.

Everything at Beano Studios is powered by the Beano Brain, its insight consultancy which understands the tastes, demands and growing purchase power of kids, teens and millennial parents. It uses its unparalleled knowledge, born from decades of experience, to help companies build their own connections with families.

Via Emanata Studios, the Studio produces film and TV content for all global audiences. Mined from the UK’s biggest comic book archive owned by DC Thomson, Emanata works with the very best diverse voices and creative talent to reimagine stories and characters for modern YA, kid and adult audiences.