April 05, 2013 | 11:44 a.m.
The Force is strong with Dark Horse Comics editor in chief Scott Allie. The Oregon-based company recently announced plans to publish George Lucas’ original screenplay for “Star Wars” as an eight-issue comic series launching in September, adapted by Lucasfilm executive editor and writer J. W. Rinzler and Mike Mayhew. As first drafted in 1974, “The Star Wars!” told the story of Jedi Annikin Starkiller and General Luke Skywalker, an alien named Han Solo and evil Sith Knights. Many had long speculated that the complete original version would never see the light of day, conflicting as it does with the saga’s mythic canon. But Allie said they found a powerful ally in Rinzler. “We ran some samples by him in order to show proof of concept, and now here we are,” Allie said. “We’ve had a great relationship with Lucasfilm for […]
June 26, 2012 | 12:15 p.m.
So what exactly is Grant Morrison building out there in the Nevada desert? This September the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas will host “a once-in-a-lifetime” event called MorrisonCon, which sounds not that different than, say, last month’s Comicpalooza in Houston, Megacon every winter in Orlando, Fla., or the recently launched Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo, a brand that will meet the public this September in Los Angeles (and soon be cloned for China). But on closer examination, the plans for the Sept. 28-30 MorrisonCon are quite different than the standard comic book convention — just as the 52-year-old Morrison is the most distinctive voice in comics today with his Dada superhero excursions and carefully cultivated trickster-shaman persona. The writer, who splits time between Los Angeles and his native Scotland, describes his event in a way that sounds more like a TED Conference with a dash of Nocturnal Wonderland, The Bowery Poetry Club and, um, […]
Aug. 15, 2011 | 5:44 p.m.
Tom Morello, a man with searing musical ability and scorching political passions, is famous as the guitarist in Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave and increasingly for his solo folk project The Nightwatchman. Now, like his friend Gerard Way of My Chemical Romance, the amplifier auteur is moving into a new career as a storyteller in the comics world. Morello introduced those plans down at Comic -Con International but we caught up with him for a more in-depth conversation about “Orchid,” which arrives in October from Dark Horse Comics and will feature art by Scott Hepburn, who previously worked on the Oregon publisher’s “Star Wars: Nights of the Republic.” G.B.: Are comics a new passion for you? T.M.: I was an avid comic book collector as a kid. At the time my comic book tastes and my music tastes coincided, they were escapist in nature. It […]
July 26, 2011 | 10:58 a.m.
Super friends and cosmic dreamers Grant Morrison and Gerard Way will appear together Thursday at Meltdown Comics (7522 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles) for a discussion of Morrison’s acclaimed new book “Supergods,” which is a sort of meditation on meta-humanity. The two are among the elite creators in comics these days with Morrison writing key Superman and Batman arcs in recent years and Way chronicling the surreal adventures of “The Umbrella Academy.” Way also has a day job as lead singer and art director of My Chemical Romance (the band is now preparing to tour with Blink-182) and Morrison portrayed a memorable bad-guy in their music video for the hit “Sing.” I’ll be there Thursday for sure. Hope to see you there as well. — Geoff Boucher RECENT AND RELATED ‘Superman’: Grant Morrison’s new Man of Steel Morrison gets evil […]
Nov. 22, 2010 | 6:21 a.m.
Here’s a lengthy excerpt from my Sunday Calendar story on My Chemical Romance and their new career direction… High in his ridgeline home, sitting on a porch that feels like a ledge, Gerard Way peered through cigarette smoke and the late-afternoon Pasadena haze as he searched his memory for the moment when his band, My Chemical Romance, shed its skin. “I think,” he said with a world-weary chuckle, “the liberating moment is when we decided that we were allowed to make a dance record.” These are strange seasons for Way and his band, who deliver their fourth studio album, “Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys,” on Nov. 22 and have just announced a world tour that finds them back from the brink of despair and bitter breakup. What was their salvation? Comic books, old sci-fi films and […]
Nov. 18, 2010 | 1:26 p.m.
EXCLUSIVE: ON THE SET It was a gray Sunday morning in Los Angeles — almost Scottish with its gloom factor, in fact — when I headed to downtown to watch My Chemical Romance film a music video for “Sing,” a single off of its new album, “Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys.” The album and tie-in videos are based on a dystopian vision of the future that was hatched in the mind of lead singer Gerard Way, who is also well-known to comics fans for his work on the award-winning Dark Horse series The Umbrella Academy. As I watched from a corner, Way and his band mates — portraying an armed band of mysterious misfits called the Killjoys — staged a nasty gun battle with the minions of a sinister-looking fellow with a shaved head and ruffled shirt. When the bad guy […]
Nov. 24, 2008 | 2:55 p.m.
It’s an exciting time here at Hero Complex as we approach our five-month anniversary. We’re getting a lot of new contributors. One of them is Nathan Olivarez-Giles, who has this dispatch… It’s time to put your monocle on: “The Umbrella Academy” is in Los Angeles in a big way. Dark Horse Comics is celebrating the quirky and compelling “Academy” here to mark the release of “The Umbrella Academy: Dallas,” the second installment of the critically acclaimed series. The first issue of the “Dallas” book hits stores Wednesday (Nov. 26), and at 8 p.m. on Friday (Nov. 28), Gerard Way, author of “Academy” and lead singer of My Chemical Romance, will be signing autographs at Southern California’s famous comics landmark Golden Apple (7018 Melrose Ave). Meanwhile, Secret Headquarters (3817 W. Sunset Blvd.), the great comics store and gallery in Silver Lake, […]
Oct. 22, 2008 | 8:05 p.m.
EXCLUSIVE I ran into one of my favorite people in comics and music, Gerard Way of My Chemical Romance fame, backstage at the Spike TV Scream 2008 Awards. We wandered around a bit, and I was fortunate enough to introduce him to both Frank Miller and Tim Burton (I do love my job). Way was in such a good mood that he gave me the major lowdown on “The Umbrella Academy” ramping up as a film project at Universal. He talked about his hopes to bring in people such as “Children of Men” director Alfonso Cuarón, Oscar-winning costume designer Colleen Atwood (“Chicago,” “Sweeney Todd“) and perhaps screenwriter Diablo Cody, who picked up an Academy Award for “Juno.” GB: So what’s the good word on “The Umbrella Academy”? Way: “We just had our first meeting at Universal, and it went great. […]
Oct. 20, 2008 | 2:48 p.m.
I went to the Spike TV Scream 2008 Awards and have plenty of things to report back from it. First off, here’s a story I wrote that was published on the front page of the Los Angeles Times this morning. The Oscars present Hollywood as it wishes to be — refined, glamorous and high-minded — but on Saturday night at the Greek Theatre, the Spike TV Scream 2008 Awards showed the movie industry as it truly is in 2008: obsessed with superheroes, overflowing with fake blood and relentless in its pursuit to sell popcorn to teenagers. And despite a name that sounds like a B-movie convention, the Scream Awards turned out to be so of-the-moment in their target audience that top studio executives, major stars and A-list directors not only attended, they talked backstage about the show as a sign […]
July 23, 2008 | 5:38 p.m.
Gerard Way, the lead singer of My Chemical Romance and the author of "The Umbrella Academy," is our featured contributor on The Essential Shelf, and this is the final installment of his Top 10 all-time graphic novels. You can find the first installment here and the second one here. Below are Nos. 1, 2, 3 and 4 on his list: "Watchmen" by Alan Moore and Dave GibbonsThis is the first graphic novel I tell people to read if they are slightly unfamiliar with comics, and it is the graphic novel that changed the way I thought about superheroes and mainstream comics. I often refer to ‘Watchmen’ as a gateway drug because that’s exactly what I think about it. It’s the one graphic novel that leads you to more cerebral, “outside-thinking” works. In suggesting this first to people, I realized that […]