April 19, 2014 | 3:00 p.m.
When “Star Wars Rebels” debuts this fall, fans will hear some very familiar sounds. Yes, the ever-present “Star Wars” fanfare will be there, but for the first time in a “Star Wars” TV series, the beloved John Williams themes featured throughout the original trilogy will be back — in slightly different form. “I’m using a lot more of John’s themes, but more importantly I’m using the little motifs he had,” says Kevin Kiner, the man picked to score the new series. Fans are already familiar with his work as the longtime composer of “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” but for “Rebels” he’s digging back into the Lucasfilm audio vaults, using bits of music that will instantly conjure images of Han, Luke, the Death Star and more. “I never used John’s music before on ‘Clone Wars’ under specific instructions from George […]
April 19, 2014 | 2:34 p.m.
WonderCon 2014 is underway at the Anaheim Convention Center, with cosplayers, comic book enthusiasts and genre fans flocking to the city’s convention center to check out a range of booths, panels and special programming. Smaller in scale than July’s massive San Diego confab, Comic-Con International, WonderCon still draws movie studios and television networks eager to showcase their upcoming titles. Saturday’s schedule included arena presentations devoted to such upcoming blockbusters as “Godzilla,” “X-Men: Days of Future Past” and “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes,” while Friday night brought the premiere of the new animated movie, “Son of Batman,” which was followed by a Q&A with actors Jason O’ Mara, Sean Maher, Xander Berkeley and others. COMIC-CON PHOTOS: Cosplay costumes, in all their crazy glory Cosplay, of course, is always a big part of the scene at the annual pop culture expo […]
April 18, 2014 | 6:00 p.m.
Batman has long been able to count on help from Gotham Police Commissioner Jim Gordon. But the same can’t be said for the hero’s relationship with Det. Harvey Bullock. The gruff homicide investigation veteran is as much a lead character in current and upcoming issues of “Detective Comics” as the Dark Knight, the DC series’ new writer-artist, Francis Manapul, told the crowd at the Batman comics panel Friday at WonderCon. “The great thing about Harvey Bullock is he ain’t giving him nothing,” Manapul said. The two will be tracking the same killer but getting in each other’s way, and Batman will ask Bullock, “What’s more important — you wanting to win, or solving this crime?” he added. He and his co-writer, Brian Buccellato, debuted on the series with this month’s No. 30 after a well-regarded run on “The Flash.” On […]
April 18, 2014 | 1:27 p.m.
Now Groo’s makers do what Groo’s makers do best. Following up on the recent announcement from publisher Dark Horse that the long-gestating “Groo vs. Conan” four-part miniseries will debut July 23, the fantasy warrior parody character’s multiple-Eisner-Award-winning creative team, creator-writer-artist Sergio Aragones and co-writer Mark Evanier had more welcome news for their WonderCon panel crowd. “For more than a year, you’re going to have monthly Groo again,” Evanier said. Following the four-parter with Conan, a new 12-issue series, “Friends and Foes,” will catch up with past Groo cast members including Captain Ahax, Granny Groo (no word on whether her grandson is in for another spanking), the witches Arba and Dakarba, and the handsome warrior Arcadio. “Groo vs. Conan,” which Evanier billed as “11 years in the making,” brings Aragones’ comedic creation with a pronounced proboscis, feared as much for his […]
April 18, 2014 | 12:48 p.m.
WonderCon 2014 opens its doors Friday at the Anaheim Convention Center. The little sister event to San Diego’s Comic-Con International is expected to draw crowds that include cosplayers, comic book enthusiasts and all manner of genre fans to check out a range of booths, panel presentations and special programming. For those headed to the weekend-long affair, here’s a selection of highlights you might not want to miss. FRIDAY 1. Celebrate the Bat: Batman marks his 75th anniversary this year, and Wondercon will feature several panels dedicated to the Caped Crusader. Tops on the list could be the world premiere of the “Son of Batman,” based on Grant Morrison’s heralded storyline and the latest entry in the ongoing series of DC Universe animated films. The cast and crew will be on hand for a Q&A following the screening. 6 p.m. 2. […]
April 17, 2014 | 5:52 p.m.
Disney is releasing a new series of children’s books based on the original “Star Wars” trilogy, starting with a collaboration between bestselling children’s author Tony DiTerlizzi and the late iconic concept artist Ralph McQuarrie. The “Star Wars Saga” series will hit stores beginning with DiTerlizzi and McQuarrie’s picture book “The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight” in October, Disney Publishing Worldwide announced Thursday. Three subsequent books will follow, leading up to the highly anticipated December 2015 movie release of “Star Wars: Episode VII.” The additional titles include retellings of “A New Hope” by R.J. Palacio (“Wonder”), “The Empire Strikes Back” by Adam Gidwitz (“A Tale Dark and Grimm”) and “Return of the Jedi” by Tom Angleberger (“Origami Yoda” series). The books will be illustrated by “Star Wars” concept artist Iain McCaig and published under the Disney-Lucasfilm Press imprint. DiTerlizzi, best known […]
April 16, 2014 | 9:33 a.m.
Marvel debuted a new “Guardians of the Galaxy” featurette during Tuesday’s episode of ABC’s “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” The behind-the-scenes clip showcased prominent members of the movie’s ensemble cast discussing their roles in the cosmic adventure that’s set to arrive in theaters Aug. 1. “It’s a not a typical superhero movie,” star Zoe Saldana explains at one point. Directed by James Gunn (“Super”) and based on the Marvel comic of the same name, “Guardians of the Galaxy” stars Chris Pratt as the roguish antihero Peter Quill, a.k.a. Star-Lord. Once the interstellar scofflaw steals a mysterious orb, Quill finds himself on the run from powerful villain Ronan (Lee Pace), whose evil plans threaten the universe. Quill is forced to team up with a squad of alien misfits to battle the galactic threat — a group that includes a gun-toting creature named Rocket […]
April 16, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.
Fans of the late Damian Wayne may be excited at the title “Robin Rises: Omega” and the restoration of a familiar sidekick name to “Batman and …,” but writer Peter J. Tomasi isn’t yet saying who the Robin in the July stories will be. The tough-to-tame Damian — who was Bruce Wayne’s son, the most recent Robin and maybe the most dangerous 10-year-old in the DC Universe — died in battle in the early 2013 release “Batman Inc.” No. 8. Since then, his father has been seen trying to figure out a way to revive him — and trying to recover his body from the boy’s villainous grandfather, Ra’s al Ghul, who’s stolen it and daughter Talia al Ghul’s — in the pages of”Batman and …,” which has featured a variety of team-ups (most recently Aquaman) since Damian’s demise. “Robin […]
April 15, 2014 | 9:02 p.m.
The final trailer for “X-Men: Days of Future Past” has debuted, and the clip spotlights the critical role in the narrative played by Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. “I was sent here for you, from the future,” Jackman’s Logan says to a younger Charles Xavier, played by James McAvoy. “Could you give me that one more time please?” the disheveled Xavier asks with a laugh. Mutant fans can check out the clip promoting the director Bryan Singer’s film, which is set to arrive in theaters May 23, below. Adapted from one of the beloved comic book story lines conceived by Chris Claremont, “X-Men: Days of Future Past” stars actors from Matthew Vaughn’s 2011 prequel “X-Men: First Class,”and the original “X-Men” trilogy, which launched in 2000 with Singer’s original “X-Men” and arguably ushered in the current golden age of comic book films. “Future […]
April 15, 2014 | 6:04 p.m.
Marvel’s “Hawkeye,” DC/Vertigo’s “The Wake” and Image’s “Saga” topped the roster of Eisner Award nominations, which honor outstanding work in the comics field. The nominations for the 2014 awards were announced Tuesday, marking the 26th year of the ceremony, long considered to be the Oscars for comics. Image Comics topped the list of publishers with 17 nominations plus three shared; Fantagraphics received 18 noms. “Hawkeye” and its creative team received five nominations for writer Matt Fraction, continuing series, single issue, cover artist (David Aja) and colorist (Matt Hollingsworth). Fraction was nominated for best writer for several series, including “Sex Criminals,” which was hailed by Time as “comic series of the year.” Fraction will square off in the category against Kelly Sue DeConnick, who was nominated for her work on two series — Image’s “Pretty Deadly,” which earned several nominations and Marvel’s “Captain […]