Actor/filmmaker developing multiplatform project.

Deadline reports that Kevin Costner has signed a deal with Atria Books for ‘The Explorers Guild,’ an epic serialized illustrated adventure novel series that the ‘Hatfields & McCoys’ star is developing with writer and art director Jon Baird, and illustrator Rick Ross.

The series follows a clandestine group of adventurers who seek out the places where light gives way to shadow and reason is usurped by myth. The secrets of this unknown world are hidden in mountain ranges and lost in deserts, sunk to the ocean floor and lodged deep beneath polar ice. The aim of The Explorer’s Guild: to discover the mysteries that lie beyond the boundaries of the known world.

Set against the backdrop of World War I, with Western Civilization spiralling into chaos, the first installment in The Explorers Guild series, ‘A Passage to Shambhala,’ concerns the Guild’s quest to find Shambhala, the golden city of Buddhist myth. Each member is driven toward the City for a different reason: one believes that finding it will save his brother’s life; another hopes that it will reveal a path to spiritual enlightenment. Some believe the power of the city can be used to restore peace, while others are certain that Shambhala is responsible for bringing mankind to the brink of apocalypse.

‘The Explorers Guild Volume One: A Passage To Shambhala’ will be published in 2014.

Costner is hoping that the series will appeal to readers from young adult to more mature mystery and adventure enthusiasts and has plans to transfer the property to multiple platforms including traditional and new media, along with an animated series and eventually as live action theatrical films, which he intends to produce and star in, with innovative directors behind the camera.