Josh Hartnett has signed on to star in the comic book adaptation film, 30 Days of Night for Columbia Pictures.

The IDW comic book was written by Steve Niles and illustrated by Ben Templesmith; the story is set in Barrow, Alaska, the northernmost town in the U.S., where the sun does not appear for more than 30 days during the dead of winter. The Hollywood Reporter says an evil force emerges from the darkness, striking terror in the town. The local sheriffs, a husband (Hartnett)-and-wife team, are forced to choose between saving themselves and helping the town survive until daylight returns.

No word yet on the female lead; David Slade is aboard to direct the Stuart Beattie and Brian Nelson-written script. Shooting will take place mostly in New Zealand, with some exteriors in Alaska. An October, 2007 release has been set for 30 Days of Night.