In what may be the most nerd-baiting-est sentence ever to appear on this storied web site, it was announced today that former Doctor Who star David Tennant is teaming up with Felicia Day and Walking Dead star Steven Yeun for an animated movie based on John Layman and Rob Guillory’s Eisner Award-winning comic Chew.
Chew centers on FDA agent Tony Chu (Yeun), who possesses the unique talent of “cibopathy”—the often-nauseating ability to see the life history of everything he eats. He uses that skill, along with his not inconsiderable talents as a detective, to investigate various cases, as well as a global—and beyond—conspiracy regarding a deadly plague and a worldwide prohibition on eating chicken.
Tennant will play Tony’s partner, the rotund and verbose Mason Savoy. The role was originally planned for Robin Williams, a fan of the series, but was recast in the aftermath of the actor’s death in 2014. Day, meanwhile, has reportedly already recorded her part as Tony’s love interest, Amelia, whose own food-based superpower allows her to make anyone who reads her food criticism experience the flavors she describes. (One of Chew’s many joys is the way Layman and Guillory find way after way to introduce new powers built around the central theme.)
This is the second time a serious effort at adapting Chew has been made; Showtime originally acquired the rights to turn the series into a TV show back in 2011. That series was assumed to be in development until 2013, when Layman made a Facebook post announcing that it wasn’t going to happen. The film version of Chew, directed by Jeff Krelitz from a script by Layman, was in development last year, when production was paused in the wake of Williams’ death.