Comic-Con: My Friend Dahmer Adaptation in the Works


My Friend Dahmer, written by two-time Eisner award nominee Derf Backderf, is headed to the big screen. The title is an autobiographical graphic novel that follows Jeffrey Dahmer from age 12, when he was a shy, bespectacled kid, right up to the day he kills his first victim two weeks after high school graduation. Here’s the press release:

Ibid Filmworks partners Marc Meyers and Jody Girgenti are set to produce “My Friend Dahmer,” John “Derf” Backderf’s autobiographical graphic novel that follows Jeffrey Dahmer from age 12, when he was a shy, bespectacled kid, right up to the day he kills his first victim two weeks after high school graduation. Aperture Entertainment’s Adam Goldworm is partnering with Ibid Filmworks on the project.

Set in the bizarre world of 1970s suburbia, Jeff Dahmer, a troubled teenager, descends into darkness as his divorcing parents, high school teachers, and peers stand by and do nothing. Told through the eyes of his friend Derf, this is a touching, realistic look at some oddball teens trying to find their identities in the tumultuous 1970’s.

Although there are macabre elements to this story, this will be less a horror film and more a coming-of-age tale of teenagers teetering on the abyss… WELCOME TO THE DOLLHOUSE meets DAZED AND CONFUSED by way of HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER.

Indie publisher Abrams ComicArts released this critically acclaimed best seller in March. The graphic novel recalls Dahmer’s isolation, binge drinking, bizarre behavior to get attention, and his disturbing fascination with roadkill. Derf and his friends created the Dahmer Fan Club and encouraged Dahmer to act out, including fake epileptic fits and his imitation of a cerebral palsy victim.

The role of a teenage Jeffrey Dahmer is a star-making role with huge breakthrough potential for the right young actor. The last actor to get into Dahmer’s skin was Jeremy Renner in 2002’s DAHMER; he was rewarded with an Independent Spirit Award nomination that helped launch his career.

“Derf” Backderf one of the most widely published alternative cartoonists in the U.S. He has been nominated for two Eisner Awards and has received a host of honors, including the prestigious Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award for political cartooning. His comic strip, The City, appears regularly in over 50 weekly newspapers. It debuted in the now-defunct Cleveland Edition in 1990 and quickly spread to papers coast-to-coast, including The Village Voice. Carnicelli Literary Management repped Backderf and “My Friend Dahmer” in the deal.

Marc Meyers (Writer/Director, Producer) is a filmmaker and playwright and the co-founder of Ibid Filmworks. His most recent feature HARVEST (2011) is a New York Times Critics’
Pick starring Oscar nominees Robert Loggia and Barbara Barrie, Jack Carpenter, Arye Gross, and Tony Winner Victoria Clark, with original music by Grammy & Tony Winner Duncan Sheik and David Poe. Marc also wrote & directed APPROACHING UNION SQUARE (Sundance Channel). He was part of the team behind the 9/11-themed doc WITNESSING that premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, and aired on MSNBC.

Jody Girgenti is also the co-founder of Ibid Filmworks and produced HARVEST and APPROACHING UNION SQUARE for the company. Additionally, Jody produces branded content including Xperia Studio, the award-winning global campaign for Sony. Formerly, she served as an original programming executive at AMC, where she was an integral part of the development team responsible for the inaugural slate of scripted shows, starting with MAD MEN. Jody has also worked for ThinkFilm and Court TV.

Aperture Entertainment, Goldworm’s busy boutique management/production company, has recently announced a string of macabre indie projects including a feature film adaptation of Chuck Palahniuk’s SNUFF and the cannibal love story TASTE (with Stuart Gordon directing the stage play and the film). Goldworm is currently producing LORE at Warner Bros. starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, based on the IDW comic book, and THE LAST WITCH HUNTER at Summit. Goldworm also produced Simon Rumley’s critically acclaimed thriller RED, WHITE & BLUE (IFC), the upcoming SILENT NIGHT DEADLY NIGHT remake starring Malcolm McDowell, and Showtime’s Emmy-winning series MASTERS OF HORROR.