Saturday, December 22, 2012

HAPPY HOLIDAYS


Well, it is THAT time of year already. And while I have been a bit quiet for the last few months, I have NOT been sitting on my collective behind doing nothing. Yes, I have been writing, plotting, and checking a few dream projects off my to do list.
So get ready for some fresh Ewrote product in 2013. There will be announcements along the way, plus signings, appearances, and who knows... maybe even a web  premiere or three. Sorry, no spoilers just yet. Happy Holidays for now. Enjoy the new Doctor Who Christmas Special -- I cannot wait to see it!

And then I will see you in 2013... where things will get very, very interesting! 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

EWROTE AT DC SIGNING THIS WEEKEND

Southern California fans, come out this Sunday, Oct. 21st @1pm and meet a whole bunch of great DC folks! That's right, EMERALD KNIGHTS in Burbank, CA is hosting a DC extravaganza featuring writers, artists, voice talent, & composers... all from DC Entertainment projects!  I'll be there, and so will many of your favorites:

Comic book contributors:Joshua Fialkov (writer) - I, Vampire, Adam Glass (writer) - Suicide Squad, Hyle Higgins (writer) - Nightwing, J.T. Krul (writer) - Captain Atom & Batman Beyond Unlimited, Brian Buccellato (writer) – Flash, Alé Garza (artist) - he starts on Teen Titans 13, Mike Johnson (writer) – Supergirl,
Eric Wallace (writer) - Mr Terrific

Composers:Lotita Ritmanis, Michael McCuistion, Kristopher Carter
They all worked on Batman: Animated Series, Teen Titans, Batman: Brave & the Bold, Young Justice, Superman: Animated and Justice League.
Frederik Weidmann - Green Lantern: Animated

Voice Talent:Josh Keaton (Green Lantern: Animated Series, Young Justice & Batman: The Animated Series)

Go to the Emerald Knights website for more details: http://ekcomicsandgames.com/index.php/emerald/

I'll be signing MISTER TERRIFIC: MIND GAMES trade paperbacks, plus anything else you put in front of me. Except a pepperoni pizza. That I'll just eat. 



http://www.amazon.com/Mister-Terrific-Vol-Mind-Games/dp/140123500X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1340666302&sr=8-1&keywords=MISTER+TERRIFIC+VOL.+1:+MIND+GAMES

Hope to see you Sunday!

Monday, October 1, 2012

FOSTER SIGNING

Thanks to all the wonderful fans who came out for the FOSTER event in Anaheim. This is part of the signing gang a few minutes before the start of the event. Pictured from left to right: Brian Buccellato (FOSTER creator, THE FLASH), Vince Hernandez (Lady Mechanika, Aspen Comics), Sterling Gates (SUPERGIRL), Ewrote, & Robert Napton (JOHN CARTER OF MARS).

And if you still haven't picked up a copy of the FOSTER ANTHOLOGY 2012, do it now at the link below:

http://www.brianbooch.com/dog-year-store/foster-anthology/

It's also available at your local comic book retailer. If you don't see it on the shelves, ask... nay... make that, DEMAND that they order a few. It's the perfect Halloween gift!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

ELECTION 2012


Sometimes you have to stop reading comic books and watching movies long enough to see what is going on in the world around you. And if you do not believe me, maybe you will believe Nick Fury himself... SAMUEL L. JACKSON:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=og35U0d6WKY

Thanks to the Jewish Council for Education & Research for this timely message.



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

EWROTE AT "FOSTER" SIGNING THIS SATURDAY



Southern California comic book & pop culture fans, come out to PHAT COLLECTIBLES in Anaheim, CA this Saturday @ 1pm. I'll be there along with a ton of fantastic writers & artists to celebrate the release of the all-new FOSTER ANTHOLOGY 2012.

What's FOSTER? A groovy new independent horror book with gritty characters set in a retro-1970s world. But don't listen to me. Check out creator/writer/artist Brian Buccellato talking about his monstrously beautiful series:

http://www.comicvine.com/news/brian-buccellato-talks-creator-owned-project-foster/144048/

For details, go to the Phat Collectibles website.

http://www.phatcollectibles.com/

See you Saturday!

Friday, September 14, 2012

EWROTE @ STAN LEE'S COMIKAZE 2012

 LAST MINUTE ANNOUNCEMENT FOLKS...

Yes, I'll be appearing at Stan Lee's Comikaze Convention 2012 this weekend! I'll be part of a panel on all-things DOCTOR WHO. Joining me... hmmmm. Make that I have the privilege of appearing with the wonderful Daphne Ashbrook. You probably know her best as "Grace," the 8th Doctor's companion in the Fox Doctor Who TV movie from 1996.


Also joining us will be other guests, including the always fabulous Jessica The Comic Book Girl, and if you don't know her... trust me. She's a delight, plus uber-talented, and she definitely knows her DW.

The Details:

STAN LEE'S COMIKAZE EXPO 2012
LA Convention Center
Saturday & Sunday, Sept. 15-16
For info, go to: http://comikazeexpo.com/

Doctor Who Panel
Saturday, Sept. 15th @ 11am.
Room 301B

I hope to see you there!





Saturday, August 25, 2012

WHAT IF...?

 
WANNA KNOW WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A BUNCH OF WRITERS HANG OUT?

Well, inevitably, no matter how hard we try not to... the topic turns to writing. What someone is writing at the moment. Where someone is stuck on a rewrite. How late a check is. Etc., etc.

So earlier today several writer friends and I were chatting over coffee and a familiar question came up: "If you could write for ANY show, what would it be?" In years past, I'd given answers such as "24" (me loves my Jack Bauer), "Battlestar Galactica" (do I REALLY need to explain that one?!), or "Hawaii 5-0" (me loves Hawaii, beaches, explosions, and mai tais a bit TOO much). But during today's confab, the following caveat was added: "... and it can be any show PAST, PRESENT, OR FUTURE."

After debating vociferously over how one could choose to write on a show that hasn't been created yet ["Zombie Doctors," anyone?], I came up with a bunch of shows from the past that I would have loved to be a part of: THE X-FILES, STAR TREK, BUFFY / ANGEL, TWIN PEAKS, and DARK SHADOWS to name a view. These are the shows that blew me away as a kid and continue to influence my work today.

Then it occurred to me. There IS one show I'd love to write for. A show from my past (Tom Baker), my present (S7 in less than a week? OH, HELL, YEAH!), and my future (2013... 50th Anniversary... need I say more?). Yup, if I could write for any show in the world, even just one episode, it would be DOCTOR WHO.

WHY?

Hmmm. There are tons of reasons. I could say that it's because Elizabeth Sladen, Louise Jameson, and Mary Tamm were some of my first boyhood crushes. I could say it's because I did a pretty good K-9 impression in the sixth grade. Or maybe it's because I'm going to miss Amy and Rory so much that I want to pen one more, final adventure with them. But the truth is... I'd write DOCTOR WHO in a heartbeat because in The Doctor's world anything is possible.

On DOCTOR WHO, all races, all colors, and all orientations work, live, love, fight, die, laugh, and cry together. It's a world we should all aspire to bring about just like The Doctor himself does. It's a world I want to live in. And admit it. You wish you lived in it, too.

But since I'm looking at things now from a writing professional's perspective, I have to admit that there's an even larger attractiion to writing DOCTOR WHO. (The first TV spec I ever wrote back in the late 90's was a spec DOCTOR WHO, and yes, the program wasn't even on the air back then. THAT'S how much I love this show...).

With the ability to tell stories set anywhere... and in anytime... The Doctor's adventures are truly limitless. Just how limitless? I'll use Neil Gaiman's frakkin' brilliant S6 episode, "The Doctor's Wife," as the perfect example. In it [MILD SPOILER HERE, FOLKS...] the TARDIS itself becomes personified, then goes on one of the wildest adventures ever with the hero who's been... fondling (!)... her controls for centuries. It's an episode full of joy, tears, action, and comedy. And it's the kind of episode that makes us all feel wonderfully glad to be alive, to be human, and to have the ability to feel, think, love, react, and yes, cry.

Folks, try as we might, writers rarely (if ever) get the opportunity to walk the creative line along such a varied emotional pallet as audiences experience on DOCTOR WHO. Now don't get me wrong. There are a ton of great shows out there right now. And great shows from GREY'S ANATOMY to GRIMM do an absolutely fantastic job of combining intense drama with either romance or tears or chills or humor. But imagine a show that does all of them AND MORE every week? By "more" I''m talking about politics ("The Deadly Assassin"), historical fiction ("Vincent and the Doctor"), bizarre fantasy ("The Pirate Planet"), environmental activism ("The Green Death"), pure sci-fi action & epic spectacle ("Army of Ghosts"/"Doomsday"), horror ("The Curse of Fenric"), and pure sexiness (anything with River Song).

Simply put, if being human is about experiencing a gamut of emotion over the course of a lifetime, then here is the one show that encapsulates and reflects that varied palette better than anything else out there. Which means if getting the opportunity to write great TV for a living is a privilege, then writing DOCTOR WHO must be the greatest privilege of all.

Oh, Stephen Moffat, how I envy you. And all of your talented writing crew.

You folks have the best writing gig in the galaxy. And it shows in every nuance, every classic nod, every exuberant Matt Smith soliloquy you write. Maybe someday I'll join you. But until then, let me just say two things: 1) See you next Saturday, Sept. 1st on BBC America. And 2)... keep up the great work.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Guess you know where I'll be this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday...

No, I don't have any "official" signings this week. But if you spot me walking the floor or listening to a panel, introduce yourself and bring a pen. I'm happy to sign something for you on the spot. Especially if it's a brand spanking new copy of my latest tpb, MISTER TERRIFIC: MIND GAMES.


BTW: If you haven't picked up a copy of MIND GAMES, you can order it now from Amazon.com at the link below:

Buy "MISTER TERRIFIC: MIND GAMES" now.

And... LET THE GEEK GAMES BEGIN!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012





LA EUREKA fans, come say good-bye next Monday, July 9th. The Paley Center will be hosting a special evening with the shows creators & cast, plus they'll also show our pentultimate episode, "Double Vision" to be followed by a Q & A.

Hope to see you there!

http://www.paleycenter.org/2012-spring-eureka/

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

EWROTE INTERVIEW UP AT "GLASS HALF FULL..."


Working in Hollywood is a sprint, not a marathon. 

How so? Because you never know where the writing is going to take you. Fortunately, that's part of the fun. But hey, it's not all glamour and hanging with movie & TV stars. [In fact, it's hardly EVER that. It's mostly sitting alone in front of your computer sweating. A lot!]

But never give up. Perseverance is the key to getting your writing career off the ground. That, and staying positive during the inevitable breaks in the action that continually come along. How do I deal with it all? Find out now by checking out my interview on writer/producer Kam Miller's awesomely positive industry blog GLASS HALF FULL IN HOLLYWOOD.

Ewrote Interview at GLASS HALF FULL IN HOLLYWOOD

And remember... life's a journey. Enjoy it.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

MISTER TERRIFIC: MIND GAMES... OUT TODAY


Today's the day.


Now you can own the entire MISTER TERRIFIC collection from DC Comics. MIND GAMES bundles together issue #1-#8, along with some groovy behind-the-scenes sketches and design work from brilliant artist Gianluca Gugliotta. Meet Brainstorm... Digitus... and the villainous Kryl, along with a groovy supporting cast that includes special guest appearances by POWER GIRL and THE BLACKHAWKS.

http://www.dccomics.com/graphic-novels/mister-terrific-vol-1-mind-games

So what are you waiting for? Get thee to your local comic book store or digital download outlet and BUY it! It's intelligent superhero action married to LA style! Oh, and you might just get a few DOCTOR WHO and CE3K references along the way.

Friday, June 8, 2012

FIRST LOOK AT FOSTER'S "UNNATURAL SELECTION"



"Unnatural Selection" is my contribution to this Summer's FOSTER ANTHOLOGY 2012.

And as you can tell from this spooky, atmospheric artwork from the talented DON HUDSON, it's not for the squeamish. Fans of TITANS' more violent aspects (you know who you are!) are gonna dig this. But if you think the story is all shocks and horrors, you're in for quite a surprise. No spoilers here, but "Unnatural Selection" is actually an intimate character portrait of the young lady you see running for her life above.

Who she is... and what she's running from might surprise you. But how it affects the rest of her existence is the biggest surprise of all.

Created by writer Brian Buccellato and featuring stories by me, and many other talented comics folks... The FOSTER ANTHOLOGY 2012 will available Summer... well, 2012. Stay tuned!

Monday, June 4, 2012

MISTER TERRIFIC: MIND GAMES TPB... NEXT WEEK



I've got my copy.

But don't worry. Starting next Tuesday you can get your copy, too! Yes, it's every issue (#1-#8) of MISTER TERRIFIC in one awesome trade paperback edition. MIND GAMES has it all, including extra sketches from artist Gianluca Gugliotta. It was a labor of love for everyone involved that you're going to love revisiting. Or... if you missed out the first time, this is your chance to get onboard with LA's coolest, sci-fi superhero.

MISTER TERRIFIC: MIND GAMES -- available June 12, 2012 from DC Comics.

Friday, May 25, 2012

EWROTE CONTRIBUTING TO FOSTER ANTHOLOGY THIS SUMMER


Wondering what I've been up to? Plenty!

Unfortunately, most of it I can't talk about yet. But I'm happy to say that one thing I can talk about now is my upcoming contribution to BRIAN BUCCELLATO's wonderful indie comic creation, FOSTER.

In case you don't know, FOSTER is Brian's creator-owned supernatural mystery comic book that's part gritty 70s thriller, part monster mash up. Think of movies like DIRTY HARRY, THE TAKING OF PELHAM 1,2,3 or THE FRENCH CONNECTION mixed with WEREWOLVES (yeah, you're interested NOW, aren't you?!) and you have an idea of what FOSTER is like.

But at the heart of it, it's really a story about family: specifically a de facto father trying to be a responsible parent to an orphaned kid with a VERY big secret. Brian hopes to make FOSTER an ongoing series. Issue #3, drawn with groovy 70s style and verve by the wonderful NOEL TUAZON, is out now. It's great stuff. Whether you like noir stories, supernatural mysteries, or just plain ol' good family dramas, there's something for you in FOSTER. Go buy a copy now. You'll be glad you did.


I was already a fan of the series when Brian asked me to contribute to the FOSTER ANTHOLOGY 2012, so saying "yes" was a no brainer. And what's my story about? Let's just say "monsters are people, too" and leave it at that, shall we? Fortunately, Brian plans to have the book out and available at this year's San Diego Comic Convention in July. So you won't have long to wait.

But Brian (THE FLASH) Buccellato and I aren't the only people contributing to this fantastic collection of tales set in the FOSTER UNIVERSE. Also contributing stories are Mike (SUPERGIRL) Johnson, Kyle (NIGHTWING) Higgins, and many more incredibly talented folks. So remember to pick up a copy this summer. And until then, pick up issues #1-#3 of FOSTER. It's independent creativity at its finest.

Monday, May 14, 2012

GOT EUREKA?


Do you like hot bodies?

Well, who doesn't? That's why you're going to love tonight's all-new episode of EUREKA. It's on Syfy at 9pm EST. More good news? The story is from yours truly with a teleplay by Eureka co-creator/executive producer JAIME PAGLIA. Even more awesome news? The episode entitled, "JACK OF ALL TRADES," features Herr Paglia's amazing DIRECTORIAL DEBUT. And how did JP do?

Frakkin' amazing!

You won't believe the amount of sheer fun and character-y goodness in store for you tonight! All in all, this ep. was a labor of love from all those involved, from us episode scribes, to the rest of our producing & writing staff, and all the way up to Vancouver with coolest cast & crew in da biz. [Sniff. Starting to miss everyone again...!] Oh, and you might see some skin tonight. I'm not saying whose. You'll have to tune in to find out. Let's just say everyone really liked the dailies on this particular episode.

A lot.

EUREKA... tonight on SYFY. Check it out. It's all part of our amazing final season, which has only just begun!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

FAREWELL, JONATHAN: A FAN'S PERSPECTIVE


Vampires are immortal. We are not.

Jonathan Frid has passed away. To say that he'll be missed and that he made an indelible contribution to pop culture goes without saying. But he was also a damn wonderful human being and the light in the world is just a bit dimmer without him. I know that, because I had the opportunity to meet him on several occasions over the last few decades.

A gifted Shakespearean actor, Jonathan had a commanding presence. On stage he was charming, explosive, complex, and yes, even funny at times. On both the small and silver screens, he made audiences cry, shiver, and shake. But to a young geek looking still looking for a way to turn awkward dreams into confident realities, Jonathan--and specifically his portrayal of Barnabas Collins on DARK SHADOWS--changed my life forever.

I can remember identifying with the way Jonathan's character on the show was always an outsider, always looking to connect with his family. With modern times. With the changing world around him. But always doomed to fail. As a quiet African-American kid obsessed with horror, sci-fi, and comic books who moved constantly due to my father's military status, I grew up constantly on the outside of things. I found myself always looking in at the settled lives of those around me, kids who'd known each other since the cradle. Families who were lucky enough to have generation upon generation living within a stone's throw of them. Folks who were part of whole communities that supported each other. But I was constantly the new kid, always feeling out of place. Out of time. Yeah, other kids might have had Luke Skywalker or Indiana Jones for heroes, and that's cool. But those icons were never outsiders like Barnabas and me. Which is why their stories never touched me as deeply as those experienced by Barnabas and the rest of the insanely nutty Collins family.

So imagine in 1986 when I had the opportunity to met Jonathan for the first time. I was both elated and terrified. Still just a kid, my DARK SHADOWS obsession was beginning to fully blossom. What would meeting my hero be like? What if he was a jerk? What if he didn't show up? (I was attending my very first DS convention in Dallas, TX at the time). What if he refused to sign my 8 x 10 photo from the 1897 flashback because he hated that storyline and really liked the 1795 flashback better? With all these thoughts rattling in my head, I waited in line several hours until it was time for a brief meeting and quick autograph. Kinda a long wait, right? What was taking so long? Well, to my complete delight, I quickly discovered that the reason for the long wait was that Jonathan was really interacting with the fans, taking his time... getting to know folks as best as you could given the circumstances... and really making us feel welcome.

Wait a minute, making us feel welcome? This guy's the big shot star. Why's he being so nice?

Well, that was Jonathan. He cared about life, about people, about his craft, and most importantly, about sharing his compassion for everything with the world. This was a man who was not just a generous actor, but a generous human being. I only spent about five minutes with Jonathan that first time. And over the years, I was only able to chat with him on brief occasions. But when I did, no matter how much either he or I changed, his compassion and kindness remained. This is how I will always remember Jonathan. Even moreso than my favorite DS episodes or his wonderful dramatic readings at the yearly DS conventions I've now been attending for 26 years. I will just remember his friendly face, and smile, and cool voice, and oh-so-wonderfully-human spirit. So, yes. It's true that unlike the undead, the living are not immortal. But there is another thing I'm also sure of.

The compassion we leave behind in this world surely is.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

THE END.


What a long, strange trip it's been.

Friday, March 23, 2012

IT'S ALMOST TIME...

EUREKA'S FINAL SEASON is almost here. And to get you ready, Syfy has released this promo. Look for glimpses into the past, as well as NEW FOOTAGE from our all-new fifth season.



Eureka returns MONDAY, APRIL 16TH... BE THERE!

LA EXAMINER TALKS "MAN ABOUT TOWN"


Want the scoop on the penultimate issue of MISTER TERRIFIC? Well, THE LA EXAMINER has it. Just go to the link below for a groovy review of Michael Holt's latest adventure. Oh, and in case you can't tell from the artwork above and below, this one's full of ACTION!

http://www.examiner.com/comic-books-in-los-angeles/mister-terrific-a-man-about-town-los-angeles-review



Not only does this issue introduce a new villain, DIGITUS, it also gives the beginning of the explanation as to why KAREN STARR has been hanging out with Mister Terrific in the first place. You might even get the answer the question many have been asking for months now: "IS KAREN STARR REALLY POWER GIRL?"

MISTER TERRIFIC #7 ... available now in both print and digital editions from DC COMICS.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

OUT TODAY... MISTER TERRIFIC #7


It's the beginning of the end of the beginning for LA's newest superhero.

Since his new adventures began in issue #1, Michael Holt has had a falling out with his girlfriend, KAREN STARR. And also since then, many folks have been asking, "Is this New 52 version of Karen Starr just a businessperson or is there more to her than what we've seen so far?" Well, my friends, the answers start this month in MISTER TERRIFIC #7. It all leads to shocking revelations next month, plus the arrival of an exciting new villain, DIGITUS.

MISTER TERRIFIC #7... the penultimate issue from DC COMICS: available now in comic shops or as a digital download.

Friday, February 17, 2012

EUREKA RETURNS THIS APRIL


Still looking to the stars for some sign of your favorite show's return? Well, your wish is about to be granted. That's right, Syfy fans. EUREKA returns this April for its fifth and final season. And what a season it is going to be.

When we last left our heroes at the end of Season 4.5, Dr. Allison Blake and the rest of the Astraeus crew had vanished. Where did they go? What surprises await them? And what shocking secrets will be revealed? The answers begin in a mere 8 weeks from now, and I think you're gonna love what's in store. Yes, this is EUREKA's biggest and most exciting season ever. And it all culminates in a wonderful series finale that just. Might. Make. You. Cry.

EUREKA SEASON FIVE premieres Monday, April 16th on Syfy. Be there as your favorite small town experiences a season full of amazing revelations and kickass sci-fi thrills. It's gonna be a blast!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

CELEBRATE VALENTINE'S DAY EARLY... WITH MISTER TERRIFIC #6


There is a lot of snow in this issue. I love snow. Always have. I grew up with it a lot living on the East Coast and in Europe. But that's not the only reason there is a ton o' the white fluffy stuff in the latest MISTER TERRIFIC adventure. Nope, the plethora of winter weather is also because this issue takes place on the Icelandic glacier of Vatnajökull. And why there? Several reasons. One... it's cool. Very cool. Two... I love Björk. And three... I've always wanted to visit Iceland, and this comic book might be as close as I get for the next decade or so.

So enjoy the latest icy adventure of LA's grooviest superhero, which pits him against a very French new villain called THE TOMORROW THIEF (and yes, for the record, I have been to France). You'll also meet DR. LILY ERIKSDOTTER, Mister Terrific's old flame and an engineering genius in her own right. Will Mr. T and Lily rekindle their former romance? And even if they try, will a certain French baddy get between them in a lethal way? Well, since this is a comic book, the answer is probably YES. But the real question is, will love conquer all? Find out now. Oh, and Happy (Early) Valentine's Day.

MISTER TERRIFIC #6 - "Cold Hearted"... ON SALE NOW from DC Comics.


Saturday, February 4, 2012

MISTER TERRIFIC #6 PREVIEW AT MTV GEEK


Celebrate VALENTINE'S DAY six days early when MISTER TERRIFIC #6 hits stores and digital outlets this Wednesday, Feb. 8th.

You can also get a sneak peek at the issue, courtesy of MTV GEEK right now. Just check out the link below and meet our hero's latest nemesis, The Tomorrow Thief.

http://geek-news.mtv.com/2012/02/02/mtv-geek-exclusive-preview-mr-terrific-6/

And a special thanks to OLIVER NOME, this issue's guest artist, for filling in! Don't worry, MT fans. Regular artist GIANLUCA CUCLIOTTA will be back next month.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

THE TRUTH ABOUT BARNABAS COLLINS


JOHNNY DEPP is at it again. This time, he and Tim Burton are taking on my all-time favorite TV show, DARK SHADOWS. There's already been a lot of chatter amongst fandom about Depp's appearance, i.e. "his version" of Barnabas Collins. (Or is it Burton's version?) Yes, those first leaked photos looked rather odd and worried a lot of folks. But now OFFICIAL photos are out and I must say THEY LOOK AWESOME.


For those who don't know, Barnabas Collins is a 200-year old vampire who turns up in Collinsport, Maine in the 1960s (or apparently the 1970s in the new movie). He passes himself off as a long-lost cousin of the town's residents, the rich and powerful Collins family. Then he proceeds to drain them of their blood. The cows, too, but that's a long story. Now the conflicted Barnabas doesn't like feeding off family members. He's a reluctant vampire and an overall nice guy, and involuntary exsanguination is just plain rude. But a vampire's gotta do what a vampire's gotta do. So bloody-romantic-sexy-gothic mayhem ensues.

As I wait impatiently for (hopefully) my favorite movie of 2012 [Sorry AVENGERS, PROMETHEUS, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES, and SKYFALL] to arrive in theaters May 12th... I've also been reading about how Depp wants to create a "classic horror movie monster" with his version of Barnabas. And judging from the photo above, he's succeeding. But what I've also noticed--which is something you folks might be interested to know--is that Johnny is drawing upon some very specific movie monsters from the past to create this creepy new take on Barnabas. Which ones? From what I can tell, the two biggest influences appear to be BELA LUGOSI (from Universal's 1931 English version of DRACULA)...


...and, yup, KLAUS KINSKI from German master-filmmaker WERNER HERZOG's 1979 remake of NOSFERATU.


Now you're probably thinking, "Yeah, I can get behind the Bela Lugosi influence, dude. But that Klaus Kinski-thing is just weird."

Think about it this way, folks. Aside from being one kick-ass actor, Depp is clearly a student of film history. So we can be pretty confident that he knows all about Bela's place in horror circles, and how his take on 'Dracula' defined the role long before Lee, Langella, or Oldman came around. But have you seen DEAD MAN or THE BRAVE? Whether he's acting or directing, Depp always demonstrates a clear penchant for art and foreign film-esque tastes. Which, I'm guessing, means he's seen FITZCARRALDO and a ton of other Kinski classics. In fact, now that I'm thinking about it, Kinski's notoriously intense and wholly-immersive style and approach to his roles feels a lot like Depp's approach to acting. Both men are masters at creating hyper-real characters, and then imbuing them with a grounded verisimilitude that causes audiences to care... no matter how outrageous the role. Is Depp a Klaus Kinski devotee? How the heck should I know? I've never spoken to the guy. But if I was a bettin' man, then I'd say that at the very least Kinski's past performance is on his (and Burton's) radar. I'd also bet that he and Burton probably screened the '79 (and 1922?) versions of NOSFERATU before diving headlong into the crashing waves of Collinsport.


Oh, and for the record, I LOVE Herzog's '79 remake of the Murnau masterpiece. Both the English AND German versions. I remember seeing them as a kid and being creeped out of my mind! Also, the beautifully eerie soundtrack by POPOL VUH haunts me to this day. Download it from Amazon.com and you'll see what I mean:

http://www.amazon.com/Nosferatu-O-S-T/dp/B005EO6TG6/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&s=dmusic&qid=1327186418&sr=1-7


But I digress...

The point is, if you want a preview of what the new Barnabas Collins might look and sound like in action, go back and watch Bela and Klaus' definitive performances. They might give you a leg up when DARK SHADOWS (2012) hits the big screen this summer.


Oh, and since this IS a Tim Burton flick, that means the Prince of Darkness himself--CHRISTOPHER LEE--is probably going to have a small role in the new film. That makes this the perfect time to add that the 1958 Hammer version, HORROR OF DRACULA, is my personal all-time favorite Dracula movie. It's also, without question, one of the 10 greatest horror films ever made.


And since I know that Herr Burton loves Hammer flicks (have you seen SLEEPY HOLLOW?!), get ready for a ton o' blood in this new DS movie. I'm guessing it'll make HOUSE OF DARK SHADOWS look like a Disney cartoon. And if you've seen the climactic finale of HODS, then you know that's saying something.


One final note on that initial Johnny Depp/Barnabas Collins picture up top. LOOK AT JOHNNY'S HAND.


Look at the expressiveness. The meticulous quality of using digits to convey an added air of the bizarre and the disturbing. Spidery finger gestures? Check. Creepy pointed fingernails? Check. Why is this pertinent? Because throughout cinematic history, classic vampires always have creepy, spidery hands. And the great ones almost always have those pointed claws (Lee's Dracula excepted). The hands and fingers are always used to convey the vampire's power and control of his or her victims in these films. I guess having claws adds an extra exclamation point. Or maybe it just looks cool. Either way, check out the finger action (!) in the Lugosi pix below. Even though his pointed nails aren't present (like they are in the earlier photo up top), it's all about Lugosi channeling his vampiric power through those spidery digits.


And Kinski's talons? Yup, they're...


...a sinister and direct homage to Max Schreck and F.W. Murnau (another one of my all-time favorite directors), the originators of the wacky-pointed-fingerclaw-manicure. In fact, it's such a grand tradition...


...that even Gary Oldman gets into the act in Francis Ford Coppola's deliriously enjoyable BRAM STOKER'S DRACULA (1992).


Talon-mania has trickled down to the small screen, too. Dig the claws on Mark Metcalf's "Master" from Joss Whedon's eternally-cool BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER.


So yes, Depp is carrying on an expressive horror-acting tradition for the ages. It's one that director Tim Burton is also obviously in tune with, as exemplified by the production photo below. In fact, it might be Burton's meticulous attention to detail that is driving all of this adherence to a lovable, nail-biting trope. Again, I'm just speculating here. At the end of the day, only Burton, Depp, and Hollywood make-up folks know the real skinny.


Okay.

Since I should actually stop procrastinating now and go finish writing a script of my own, I ask you, "Do you actually need more reasons to go see this movie?" Didn't think so. So until May 2012 arrives, do your homework and watch some darn vampire movies. It's homework to die for.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

MISTER TERRIFIC LOSES BATTLE WITH MAYAN CALENDAR


The world will end this year according to the Mayan calendar, which is apparently enough to make LA's superhero MISTER TERRIFIC hang up his T-Mask this May. When asked what he'll be doing for the remainder of the year, The Terrific One replied, "Partying like it's '1999.'" (Apparently, that was a very good year for him.)

SERIOUSLY THOUGH, FOLKS...

Yes, in case you haven't heard the news by now, MISTER TERRIFIC from DC Comics has been cancelled. Bummer, right? Yeah, I know. But these things happen. The reason is purely economic. Of course, if every one of you went out and bought 10,000 copies each of issues 6, 7, & 8, DC might change its mind. Ready? Set? GO.

(cue me patiently waiting)

Right. I can't afford to buy that many copies either. So no worries folks! The good news is that there are still THREE MORE groovy issues to come. In fact, here's a bit of a preview of our next issue:


ISSUE #6: "Cold Hearted"... is our special Valentine's Day issue! In it, we get to meet one of Mister Terrific's old flames, witness a changing of the guard at Holt Industries, and travel to the glacial outback of Iceland for a titanic battle between our hero and an awesome new villain called THE TOMORROW THIEF, who--by the way--speaks French fluently.

Will I miss the book? You bet. But you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men. For this reason, starting next month, I'll be taking a few moments to share some behind-the-scenes stuff with you. This book was always a labour (yeah, I love the English spelling better, so THERE!) of love, and I think there are some "making-of" moments that you'll enjoy. Call it a "peek into the process" of sorts. And last, but certainly not least...

THANKS TO ALL THE WONDERFUL FANS WHO BOUGHT AND CONTINUE TO SUPPORT THIS BOOK! YOU FOLKS ARE THE BEST!

And here's even better news: there's waaaay more exciting stuff coming in 2012 from Yours Truly, so STAY TUNED.

EW