EXCLUSIVE: McFarlane Films partners with wiip and Warner Bros. Rooster Teeth Studios. Discovery to develop RAW10an adult animated series from creator Dan Dominguez (Gen: Lock), inspired by the eponymous action figure series from McFarlane Toys.
The RAW10 toyline consists of cybernetically enhanced animals, which are now sold exclusively at Walmart. Dominguez’s adaptation will be an R-rated Saturday morning cartoon for adults that, through the lens of the toyline, will satirically explore the tropes of ’80s animation. He will serve as executive producer alongside Todd McFarlane , Sean Canino of McFarlane Films, Paul Lee, Mark Roybal and Nate Winslow of wiip and Dan Shorr of Rooster Teeth Studios. The team will present the project to buyers early next month.
McFarlane Toys is one of the top five global leaders in its field and a licensee of world-class brands and leading global franchises. The company was founded by comic book legend Todd McFarlane, who created the Spawn universe and won two Emmys for his groundbreaking animated series of the same name, which aired on HBO from 1997 to 1999. When McFarlane first announced the RAW10 launching the toy in 2020, pre-orders sold out within hours. The line has garnered widespread praise and excitement not only from the media, but also from adult collectors and pop culture enthusiasts who grew up during the revival of modern action figures of the 80s and 90s.
The series adaptation of RAW10 represents McFarlane’s first foray into animation in 23 years, and will feature fan-favorite toyline characters like Fren-Z (a robotic mix of a great white shark and a prehistoric megalodon), Battlesnake (a super awesome reptilian monster) and Cy-Gor, who is part gorilla, part cyborg. (Although Cy-Gor was originally introduced in the Spawn universe, and its Spawn backstory can come into play, the RAW10 anime series will remain separate from Spawn franchise.)
“Having fun in the older animation space is always something I think about,” McFarlane said. “With the quirky mind of writer Dan Dominguez and the experience of Rooster Teeth, we all hope the combined total will be a wild and entertaining ride for everyone. Animation keeps our minds on a budget unlimited to create everything.
“With Todd’s highly anticipated return to television animation, Dan’s meteoric streak of genre-defying shows, and Rooster Teeth’s flawless track record, wiip couldn’t be in better company to launch our first animated show,” said the studio’s creative director and producer, Roybal. “We’re always going to go for the most original, daring and creative filmmakers – and that’s what we have with Todd, Dan and Dan. This show will certainly wake up the whole house on Saturday morning.
“I had a Spawn poster of the film at my Bar Mitzvah, which is a choice that seems officially justified,” said Shorr, who is in charge of the screenplay at Rooster Teeth Studios. “We absolutely loved working with our partners at McFarlane Films and wiip and regaining our brilliant generation: LOCK Executive Producer Dan Dominguez for helping put together this unique love letter to genre storytelling.
Dominguez added, “As a kid, I loved Saturday morning cartoons, and as I got older, my love of animation only grew stronger through anime. So many great R-rated toons from Japan have shown me that genre animation can be done for adults. That they could be darkly hilarious, thematically rich, cerebral, violent and seductive. So when I got the chance to create the world’s first Saturday morning adult cartoon, and do it with Todd McFarlane – a personal hero who opened my eyes to how comics could be adults… needless to say, this project was a dream come true. So get ready for some deeply unsettling adult-style laughs! Strong feelings! Chills! Blood! Sex! Adult themes! And… emotions! Yes, I’m actually planning on having a 30-foot-tall cybernetic gorilla that will make you cry.
Writer and executive producer Dominguez has worked in animation with such luminaries as John Carpenter, Clive Barker, Malcolm Spellman and Jeff Howard. He is notably produced and written on the Rooster Teeth series. Gen: Lockwhich first aired on Adult Swim before moving to HBO Max in its second season, as well as Netflix’s animated martial arts series, Seis Manos. Additional credits on the writing side include WWE camp, The Epic Tales of Captain Underpants and Sponge Bob SquarePants.
McFarlane’s Spawn the comics have sold hundreds of millions of copies sold worldwide. Their creator rose to fame through his work on Marvel Comics Spider Man franchise, where he co-created Marvel villain character Venom. His company McFarlane Films has entered into a first TV deal with wiip. Its television development slate includes projects from established creators such as Thomas Lennon (Renew 911!), Anders Weidemann (Beartown), prolific graphic novel author, Sean Lewis, and ShadowMachine, who is developing the live-action series Sam & Twitch based on characters from McFarlane Spawn cartoon. This show is adapted by executive producers Jason Smilovic and Todd Katzberg for McFarlane Films and wiip.
wiip is an independent studio headed by entertainment veteran Paul Lee, who was behind HBO’s Emmy limited series, Easttown Mare, with Kate Winslet; Apple TV+ Peabody Award Winner Dickinson, starring Hailee Steinfeld; Danny Boyle’s Gun for FX on Hulu; at Jenny Han The summer when I became pretty for Amazon Prime Video; The White House Plumbers, with Woody Harrelson and Justin Theroux, for HBO; by Adam McKay The Uninhabitable Earth for HBO Max; and Dummy, with Anna Kendrick, for The Roku Channel. The studio also produced Arthur Mathews and Matt Berry Tinseltown Toast in collaboration with the BBC.
Rooster Teeth is a subsidiary of Warner Bros. founded in 2003, which has a global footprint of over 45 million subscribers to its YouTube network, 1.2 million unique monthly visitors to its apps and over 4 million registered community members. His production credits include starring Michael B. Jordan Gen: Lock and Transformers: War for Cybertron Trilogy on Netflix. He also produces the award-winning Halo satire Red vs Blueand the global phenomenon RWBY.
Dominguez is represented by Artists First and Cohen & Gardner; Rooster Teeth Studios and McFarlane by CAA.