2009 steampunk zombie novel to hit cinemas.

Hammer Films has acquired the feature rights to Cherie Priest’s steampunk sci-fi novel ‘’Boneshaker,’ with Cross Creek Pictures and Exclusive and Cross Creek attached to co-finance.

The 2009 novel is set in an alternate version of 1880s Seattle, where the city has been walled in and a toxic gas has turned many of its remaining residents into “Rotters,” more commonly known as zombies. A young widow hunts for her teen son in the Seattle underworld while dealing with airship pirates, a criminal overlord, and heavily armed refugees.

“Boneshaker is a classic zombie movie with a modern twist, which is quintessentially Hammer, so it’s a perfect fit for us,” said Simon Oakes, Chairman of Exclusive Media Group and President & CEO of Hammer Films. “Cherie Priest’s steampunk series are fantastic with a distinct, unique style, and we’re really looking forward to bringing her ‘Rotters’ to the big screen.”

Published by Tor Books, ‘Boneshaker’ is the first in a series set in the same Civil War-period, alternate-world Priest has dubbed “The Clockwork Century.” The series’ second novel, ‘Dreadnought,’ was published in 2010, and the third, titled ‘Ganymede,’ was released in September. A fourth novel, ‘Inexplicables,’ is set for release 2012. A fifth novel, ‘Fiddlehead,’ was announced last week.

John Hilary Shepherd (“Nurse Jackie”) will be penning the screenplay with Hammer’s head of production Tobin Armbrust overseeing the project’s development.