Monday, April 4, 2011

Snippets from WonderCon 2011: Stephen Christy from Archaia Comics

Hello fans; RabbiMarauder, here. Sorry to have been absent of late, but things have been a little crazy. I hope to make up for that this week, as I have a few stories to tell from WonderCon 2011. One of the highlights for me was sitting down to talk with Editor-in-Chief of Archaia Comics, Stephen Christy.

Archaia had a very busy Con. On the heels of Relativity Media releasing the new posters for their motion picture Immortals (we'll post the images soon), Archaia and Relativity announced a publishing partnership to produce a graphic novel hardcover anthology based on the film. Archaia will publish the novel this September, prior to the movie hitting theaters in November. The series of original tales are written and illustrated by some of the best in the business including David Mack (Kabuki), Ron Marz (Witchblade), Dennis Calero (Dark Tower) and Ben Templesmith (30 Days of Night). Christy explained they approached Relativity with their organic approach to comic publishing and told me "this will not feel like your average movie tie-in."

But what I was most intrigued about was an announcement that was made at ComicCon last year. Archaia will be releasing a graphic novel based on A Tale of Sand this September. For those of you who don't know, A Tale of Sand is an early unproduced screenplay from Jim Henson. Henson worked on it in the late '60s/early '70s. "This will be the first and only thing to come out completely by Jim since his death 21 years ago," said Christy. Although not much has been released about the story, we know it is the tale of a young man on a weird journey.

Archaia and the Jim Henson Company already have a good relationship with Fraggle Rock and The Dark Crystal, so when Lisa Henson (Jim's oldest daughter) asked Archaia what they wanted they said "access to the vaults."

"It's like discovering a fully produced album by Michael Jackson," Christy said of uncovering the screenplay. "True Henson fans will be able pick out things that Jim did later in projects. Are you a fan of The Muppet Movie?"

Me: "Are you kidding? 'I'm going to Bombay, India to break into movies!' "

Christy [laughing]; "That's awesome. Remember the scene in the ghost town when Kermit has the gun fight? That whole scene was lifted from A Tale of Sand." At that point, I started getting chills and asked if there would be plans to produce the screenplay as a film.

"I don't think it will get made as a movie," Christy said, a little sadly, "I don't think it can. It's weird." A Tale of Sand will be in stores this September, on what would have been Jim Henson's 75th birthday. For those who can't wait, Archaia will release a preview on Free Comic Book Day (May 7th) along with a preview of The Dark Crystal featuring story, covers and art direction by Brian Froud, the concept designer of the film. More information and up-to-date news can be found at the Archaia website.

~POPped for the Lovers, the Dreamers and me by RabbiMarauder

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