As Legendary Comics continues to trot out talent for its upcoming titles, there might be no one better to have on the roster than Grant Morrison. The Scottish writer, a member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, is a singular talent who, in these last few years, has been called on to revamp major comics and characters including Superman, Batman and the X-Men with his own unique brand of storytelling.
Now he’s turning his creative attention back to an entirely new endeavor — Morrison announced Thursday at New York Comic-Con that he is developing a six-part comic book miniseries called “Annihilator” with Legendary, with an eye toward releasing it next year.
“It’s a big science fiction story set in modern-day L.A.,” said Morrison. “It’s something I’ve been working on for the last few years.”
“Annihilator” centers on hard-partying screenwriter Ray Spass, who is down on his luck. “He’s a kind of drunken, drug-abusing Tom Sizemore,” Morrison explained. “He’s a bad boy, but he has this final chance to do a big studio movie called ‘Annihilator.’ ”
Things become complicated once Spass is diagnosed with a brain tumor, and the main character in his screenplay suddenly comes to life, leading Spass on adventures he didn’t bargain for.
Informing Morrison’s view of a futuristic Los Angeles and Hollywood was the “weird side of L.A. with a touch of satanism, illustrating a dark side,” he said. “I wouldn’t say it has a ‘Blade Runner’ feel, but it does have a little bit of ‘Faust,’ with a character like the devil. He’s not the devil, and isn’t even from this dimension, but he’s something like him.”
As with other Legendary projects, there’s the possibility that “Annihilator” could have a silver screen future, but Morrison said it’s too early to seriously speculate about movie prospects.
“Well, you have to make sure you make a good comic book first… but yeah, they’re about movies, and that’s about taking stories and converting them from one medium to another,” he said. “Really, though, we’re just concentrating on doing a really great comic book.”
Although Morrison says he’d welcome the opportunity to retell the origin of Wonder Woman — a task that recently fell to Brian Azzarello — dreaming up original characters has provided a welcome creative jolt.
“I just want to get back to creating new characters. I’ve been pretty much working with DC characters like Batman and Superman. I am happy to get to my own guys again,” Morrison said.
— Jevon Phillips
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