Iconic comic strip “Bloom County” in development as FOX animated comedy

Image: Berkeley Breathed for FOX

A collapsed lawyer, a lobotomized cat and a penguin in briefs. What do these things have in common? They’re all part of the acclaimed comic strip "Bloom County," which is in development as a new animated comedy from FOX Entertainment and Bento Box Entertainment.

Pulitzer Prize-winning original creator Berkeley Breathed is also onboard as a co-writer and executive producer of the series. 

Set in "FlyWayWayOver country," a fanciful version of Middle America where kids act like adults and animals can talk, "Bloom County" takes a satirical, irreverent look at politics and culture. The main setting is the Bloom boarding house, which is home to a rotating cast of eccentric characters — from a world-weary 10-year-old newspaper reporter to a politically conservative rabbit. 

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Breathed, then a student at the University of Texas at Austin, originated the idea in the college paper as a strip fittingly titled "The Academia Waltz." His work drew the notice of editors at the The Washington Post, who recruited the young artist to do a nationally syndicated comic. The official "Bloom County" strip made its debut in 1980, and the series appeared in more than 1,200 newspapers worldwide until its end in 1989.

Breathed continued to feature his "Bloom County" characters in his series "Outland" and "Opus." And in 2015, he revived "Bloom County" on Facebook, where he began posting new comics on an almost daily basis.

The animated adaptation is something of a passion project for Michael Thorn, President of Entertainment for FOX Entertainment, who explained, "I was introduced to the brilliance of Berkeley Breathed and ‘Bloom County’ as a teenager. His signature blend of satire, politics and sentiment hooked me. Plus, I love ‘Opus.’" Thorn went on to add, "Today, Berkeley’s smart and hilarious take on American culture is more relevant than ever. And, together with Bento Box, we’re thrilled to bring his unique ensemble of characters and social commentary to broadcast television."

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Explaining the concept for the new series, Breathed noted, "At the end of ‘Alien,' we watched cuddly Sigourney Weavergo down for a long peaceful snooze in cryogenic hyper-sleep after getting chased around by a saliva-spewing maniac, only to be wakened decades later into a world STUFFED with far worse. FOX and I have done the identical thing to Opus and the rest of the Bloom County gang, may they forgive us."

Bento Box will serve as the animation studio on the project, while Miramax, Spyglass and Project X will also executive-produce. Breathed created this original image to celebrate the announcement:


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