The relationship between Disney and Netflix may have fizzled, but that’s not stopping the owner of Marvel Studios from partnering with other streaming services to bring comic book characters to the small screen.
On Wednesday, Hulu announced it green lit two more Marvel series for its platform — “Ghost Rider” and “Helstrom.”
The strengthening partnership between Disney and Hulu is not surprising. The House of Mouse has been in talks with Comcast and Warner Bros. to secure the remaining 40% outstanding ownership of the streaming service.
Already, Hulu is producing a slate of four animated series featuring Marvel superheroes, including Howard the Duck, for its platform.
However, unlike their Disney+ counterparts, “Ghost Rider” and “Helstrom” will not cross over with other Marvel shows or films, although it will exist within the same universe, Marvel said.
“We’re thrilled Hulu will be moving into a new — admittedly chilling — corner of the Marvel Universe with ‘Ghost Rider’ and ‘Helstrom’,” Jeph Loeb, executive producer and head of Marvel Television, said in a statement Wednesday. “Paul and Ingrid are crafting gripping adventures into fear that live in our ‘Spirits of Vengence’ cornerstone,” he said of showrunners Paul Zbyszewski and Ingrid Escajeda.
“Ghost Rider” will follow Robbie Reyes, a man consumed by hellfire and bound to demon. He lives on the Texas/Mexico border and dispenses his own form of justice as he roams these border towns. Reyes will be played by Gabriel Luna, who played the character on “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D” on ABC. However, Marvel has stated that this will be a new iteration of the character and not related to Luna’s work on the TV series.
“This story hits every note for me — my love for grounded yet conflicted characters and my desire to scare the s–t out of people,” Escajeda, executive producer and showrunner for “Ghost Rider,” said in a statement. “It’s important to me to find a take that thrills existing fans as well as wider audiences and I believe we’ve done just that.”
Hulu’s other series, “Helstrom,” is about Daimon and Ana Helstrom, the children of Satan as they “track down the terrorizing worst of humanity.” Little is known about who will be cast in the series or what the official plot will entail.
“Marvel’s known for all the heart, humor and action they put into every series, but this time around we’re adding some scares to that mix,” Paul Zbyszewski, executive producer and showrunner of “Helstrom,” said. “I think we’ve found a compelling way to dissect some of our deepest fears through the experiences of our two lead characters.”
Disney is actively expanding its Marvel content, especially on streaming platforms. It’s new service Disney+, which will be available in November, will have four different live-action series featuring Scarlet Witch and Vision, Loki, Bucky Barnes [the Winter Soldier] and Sam Wilson [Falcon] and Hawkeye.
Head of Marvel Kevin Feige said these Marvel series will connect directly to the cinematic universe and to each other.
An animated series called “What If” will also be available on Disney+. It will explore hypothetical questions like: what would have happened if Peggy Carter had been given the super serum instead of Steve Rogers? Additionally, there will be two unscripted Marvel series.
Hulu is also producing adult animated shows based on MODOK, Hit-Monkey, Tigra and Dazzler and Howard the Duck. It will produce a crossover special with these characters called “The Offenders.”