Ghosted interview with Joshua Williamson- How do you steal a ghost from a haunted house? That’s the basic idea behind Ghosted, a new ongoing comic book series from Skybound. I had a chance to talk with series creator/writer Joshua Williamson about his love of haunted houses, where the story is headed, and the possibility of a Ghosted movie:
What were your inspirations for Ghosted? It reminds me of a mix of House on Haunted Hill and Ocean’s 11.
Joshua Williamson: Yeah, you nailed it. I’m obsessed with haunted houses, so I will watch or read anything related to it. Even though House on Haunted Hill is cheesier, it’s more my style. For a long time, I’ve been thinking about doing something on a haunted house. The Shining and Psycho are my two favorite movies, and I really wanted to do something like that. The stories I gravitate to are about an everyday guy put in an unusual situation. The best horror stories to me are like The Mist, where it’s more about the people.
I had been thinking about this haunted house story and, at the same time, I had been working on a heist story and I started seeing similarities between the two. I kept thinking about what you’d steal in a haunted house and I couldn’t figure it out. Then it hit me… ghosts!
Then the question is: How do you steal a ghost? After I started writing issue one, it became surprisingly simple. I won’t say what it is, but it totally makes sense and you’ll be on board.
This is one of those ideas that has a really classical feel to it and makes you wonder why no one else had come up with it before.
Joshua Williamson: I completely agree. I had been talking to publishers about this for a while and they had different issues with it. When I took it to Skybound, they immediately got it. It was the same thing, where they couldn’t believe someone hadn’t already done this. Once they greenlit the book, I immediately started working on it. It’s one of the fastest scripts I had written and it only took two weeks. My artist, Goran Sudzuka, was amazing to work with. He really nailed exactly what I was thinking about for the book and it adds so much to the story.
How involved is Robert Kirkman with this book? Does he offer input on each issue?
Joshua Williamson: He wasn’t as involved in the overall big picture, but he reads the scripts as they come in. He mostly has point notes, a lot about characters. He’s very much a character guy, as you can tell from The Walking Dead. He’s been awesome and great to work with.
What’s the overall plan for Ghosted? Is it a limited series or will it be ongoing?
Joshua Williamson: It’s an ongoing series now. Originally, it was five issues, but issue six has already been turned in. We’re pretty far ahead and I’m very happy with where we are with things.
Is this something you think could go on for years or do you know how you want to end the book?
Joshua Williamson: I’d want to go on for years, but I see a time limit. I know how the story ends and where it’s headed. I know what the next few crimes are. I won’t say it’s the same cast, because not everyone may survive the house. I definitely have an ending in mind for Jackson. He has a definite end to his story that we’re building toward.
With this being a Skybound comic and associated with Robert Kirkman, there’s probably a good chance that someone will look at Ghosted as a potential TV series or movie project. Is that something you’d be interested in seeing? Have you heard anything so far?
Joshua Williamson: I’ve been lucky that I had a book, Dear Dracula, turned into a cartoon on Cartoon Network. I have another graphic novel that has been turned into a movie and will air on Hallmark in October. I feel like a movie is the next step for Ghosted. I’ve talked to my managers and Skybound a lot about it. There have been talks and some developments, but it’s too early to go into details. I’m really excited.
“Jackson T. Winters is one of the greatest criminal masterminds to ever live…except he’s rotting in jail after his last, doomed score. But when a filthy rich collector breaks him out, he’s tasked with putting together an elite team of paranormal experts to do the impossible: Steal a ghost from a haunted house of horrors!”