JJ Abrams’ production company is looking to bring the DC Comics character Madame X to life in her very own TV series.
The acclaimed Star Wars director is teaming up with The L Word and How to Get Away with Murder producer, Angela Robinson, to adapt the comic book character for an hour-long scripted drama series that will help with JJ Abrams and Warner Bros.’ plans to create a Justice League Dark universe at HBO Max.
The Hollywood Reporter notes that JJ Abrams’ Bad Robot production studio brought on Robinson to write and supervise the project as part of his $250 million overall deal with the studio. The outlet reports that Abrams is already developing a series based on the DC Comics character Constantine, who will reportedly exist alongside Madame X in a connected universe similar to that of the Marvel Cinematic Universe or, much more aptly, the CW’s DC Comics TV universe that’s often referred to colloquially as the “Arrowverse.” In fact, Constantine has been featured heavily in the Arrowverse, first on his own standalone NBC series before a handful of cameo appearances made him a regular on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.
For those unfamiliar, Madame X, also known as Madame Xanadu, first appeared in DC Comics in 1978, according to Deadline. Originated by writers David Michelinie, Val Mayerik and designer Michael William Kaluta, Madame X is an immortal clairvoyant who often deals with otherworldly beings in the comic book universe. Her powers include levitation, teleportation, and other means of sorcery, putting her more in line with the likes of Constantine or Enchantress rather than Superman or Batman. In later comics, Deadline notes that she takes up a job as a psychic at a law firm, which gives her insight and access to help solve crimes. However, it’s unclear how much comic book lore JJ Abrams and Robinson will make canon in their adaptation of the character’s story.
Although JJ Abrams and Bad Robot are hard at work with a myriad of other projects as part of their partnership with Warner Bros., the development of a Madame X series is hardly the only project based on DC Comics that has his attention right now. In addition to Madame X and Constantine, Abrams is reportedly working with Matt Reeves for an animated Batman series for HBO Max as well as helping to produce a new Superman movie that will feature a Black lead for the first time in film. In short, it seems that Warner Bros. is hoping to double down on its use of DC Comics properties following the success of films like Wonder Woman 1984 and Zack Snyder’s highly-discussed Justice League director’s cut that dropped exclusively on the HBO Max platform earlier this year.
Ironically, despite JJ Abrams and Robinson committing to helping Warner Bros. expand its DC Comics presence on HBO Max, the duo are reportedly being given leeway to continue development on projects at rival streaming service Paramount+. Abrams is reportedly being courted to get behind the camera to direct another Star Trek movie while Robinson continues to executive produce a TV series reboot of the 1983 classic film Flashdance.