Having brought underground comic creator Harvey Pekar’s life story to the big screen in American Splendor, actor Paul Giamatti (Sideways) is reportedly returning to the world of comic books for a new animated series. Daily Variety reports that he has inked a deal to voice the lead role in Amazing Screw-On Head, a SCI FI Channel pilot based on the comic book by Mike Mignola (Hellboy).
Giamatti will voice the title character, a robotic secret agent who can screw his head onto a wide variety of bodies as he serves the Lincoln administration during the Civil War. The cast also includes David Hyde Pierce (Frasier, Treasure Planet), Molly Shannon (Saturday Night Live, Superstar) and Patton Oswalt (Blade: Trinity, Zoolander). Bryan Fuller, creator of the Showtime series Dead Like Me and co-creator of the short-lived FOX show Wonderfalls, is exec producing with Jason Netter of Kickstart Prods.
Amazing Screw-On Head will be the second Mignola project for Hyde Pierce, who provided the voice of Abe Sapien in director Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy. In the show, he will lend his voice to Emperor Zombie, while Shannon plays Patience the Vampire and Oswalt voices Mr. Groin.
The project has been shepherded at SCI FI by exec VP of programming Mark Stern, who was a fan of the comic book before he joined the network. He brought it to USA/SCI FI president Bonnie Hammer and the piolet was greenlit in April of last year.
SCI FI is actively developing an original animation component to accompany such live-action fare as Stargate SGI and Stargate Atlantis. The CG-animated space comedy Tripping the Rift returns for a second season on July 27 and Home Movies creator Brendon Small is developing something called The Barbarian Chronicles for the cabler.