Netflix buys comic company, eyeing its own universe of superhero movies

The Netflix company logo at Netflix headquarters in Los Gatos, California.
The Netflix company logo at Netflix headquarters in Los Gatos, California.PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (WP) - The comic book geniuses whose work brought you Kingsman and Kick-Ass are now part of Netflix.

The streaming giant announced on Monday that it is buying comic company Millarworld in its first acquisition ever.

The deal, for an undisclosed amount, gives Netflix the tools to make its own interconnected universe of superhero films and television shows - and a chance to emulate some Disney-Marvel magic.

Millarworld is a respected indie comics publisher founded by Mark Millar - a former writer for both Marvel and DC comics.

For Netflix, that history of creating bankable stories is attractive as it spends heavily to make its own films and shows.

It said in a Monday blog post that the move was a natural progression as it moves to create more "compelling characters and timeless, interwoven fictional worlds".

But much of the value of the deal seems to be vested in Millar himself.

Netflix's chief content officer Ted Sarandos compared Millar to a "modern day Stan Lee", a reference to the iconic Marvel writer who helped create Spider-Man, the X-Men, Iron Man and others.

Millar returned the compliment, saying in a post on his company's site that Netflix is "the future" and said he has plans for future movies and television shows.

Netflix's deal echoes Disney's acquisition of comics giant Marvel in 2009.