Avengers Assembled at Comic-Con. Plus: Thor footage report. Captain America details revealed. Walking Dead trailer online and more! Suffering the Comic-con hangover, it's your Comics2Film 10.7.26!
From a press release
San Diego, CA (July 23, 2010) - Legendary comic book master Will Eisner's groundbreaking graphic novel A Contract with God is being adapted into a live action feature film, it was announced this evening at Comic- Con International 2010 by the film's producers. In what is considered by many to be one of the most influential graphic novels ever written, in "A Contract with God" Eisner utilizes the comic book format in an innovative and pioneering way to explore stories and memories from his childhood growing up in a New York City tenement. Each tale captures the brutality, fragility, and tenderness that exists among people living in close quarters in challenging economic times.
A quartet of acclaimed independent directors are attached to direct each of the graphic novel's four adjoining chapters: Alex Rivera ("Sleep Dealer"); Tze Chun ("Children of Invention"); Barry Jenkins ("Medicine for Melancholy"); and Sean Baker ("Prince of Broadway," MTV's "Warren the Ape"). The film will be produced and adapted for the screen by Darren Dean, whose first feature "Prince of Broadway," about an illegal immigrant in contemporary New York City, is being released this fall and whose second feature, Rwanda-shot "Kinyarwanda" (directed by Alrick Brown) is in post-production, due for a festival bow in 2011.
The film adaptation of "A Contract with God" will be produced under the auspices of the Eisner estate in the spirit of the original work. Bob Schreck, a 30-year veteran of the comic book industry and Michael Ruggiero, former head of original programming at STARZ, will serve as Co-Executive Producers. Black Squirrel Films Co-Founder Tommy Oliver will serve as Co-Producer and Mark Rabinowitz, Co-Founder of indieWIRE.com, will serve as Associate Producer.
Focusing on the immigrant struggle, "A Contract With God" takes a look at a salient theme across four separate but related stories, set primarily in a New York City tenement in the 1930s. The four segments are: "A Contract With God" (Rivera), "The Street Singer" (Chun), "The Super" (Jenkins) and "Cookalien," (Baker). Each of the filmmakers comes to the project with a distinct aesthetic approach which will capture the diversity, style and essence of Eisner's story. Nat Sanders ("Medicine for Melancholy," "Humpday") will serve as editor on the entire film.
The announcement regarding the film adaptation of "A Contract with God" was made this evening at the 22nd annual Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, which honors creative achievement in American comic books including induction ceremonies into the comics industry Hall of Fame, the first time such an announcement has been made at the Eisners. Will Eisner was a regular participant in the award ceremony until his death in 2005.
Darren Dean said, "I look forward to finding the fine balance of offering Eisner fans a very faithful interpretation of his work and allowing the voices of these strong and competent filmmakers to be heard. We are all approaching the inaugural stage of this project with respect, honor and anticipation and hope that the fans will welcome us with both faith and scrutiny. This is for them, as much as any of us."
Bob Schreck said, "Getting to know Will Eisner was one of the great honors of both my personal and professional journeys. We are all well aware that the work ahead has a very high bar of excellence to aspire to set by Mr. Eisner's pioneering achievements in storytelling."
Tze Chun said, "Before I became a filmmaker, I wanted to be a comic book artist, and I spent many nights poring over Eisner's Comics & Sequential Art. The book should be mandatory reading for every person who wants to be a storyteller regardless of their intended medium. Eisner's magnum opus, "A Contract With God," is a master class in visual storytelling -- groundbreaking, humanistic, moving, and rich in detail. Within these four short stories, Eisner creates an entire world. I'm very excited to be a part of the team that will bring this film to life."
Key roles will be cast in the coming months with principle photography set to begin in 2011.
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AMC pushed The Walking Dead at Comic-Con in a big way, with panels, parties and a huge presence at the Image Comics booth on the convention floor.
Mania's own Bob Trate gives his impressions of the show with his report on the panel. He writes, "This is a comic book brought to life. What reaffirms us is Darabont’s and Gale Anne Hurd’s passion for the source material."
Check out his complete report.
There were also clips from the show being screened on the convention floor, and one industrious fan even filmed it for your enjoyment:
As expected Marvel brought the house down with their Saturday night panel at Comic-Con International, introducing fans to the cast and crew of Thor, Captain America: The First Avengers and Marvel Studios' The Avengers.
The event ended weeks of speculation over who would be the new Hulk as actor Mark Ruffalo was presented to fans as the man stepping into the tattered purple pants of Dr. Bruce Banner. Also revealed was the long-rumored casting of Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye on the team.
At an earlier panel, Joss Whedon officially confirmed that he is directing the film.
For the announcement, the trio appeared on stage with Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man), Clark Gregg (S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Coulson), Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow), Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Chris Evans (Captain America), Samuel L. Jackson (S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury) and Marvel studios chief Kevin Feige.
Marvel also screened a teaser for the film, which will hopefully be on display soon at the newly minted website Assemble.Marvel.com.
The Avengers unveiling capped off what was already a thrilling panel for fans at the show.
The Marvel presentation opened with an introduction to the now-filming Captain America film, presented by director Joe Johnston with actors Chris Evans and Hugo Weaving, who plays the Red Skull in the movie. Although filming has just begun, they were able to show a scene from the film which reveals links to Thor as well as Hydra and the Cosmic Cube. The clip was not, of course, the fake trailer that's been making the rounds this week.
A huge contingent from Thor was on hand to present that movie, including director Kenneth Branagh, Hemsworth and numerous other cast members. With filming wrapped, they were able to show a complete trailer.
Check out Bob Trate's complete report for more about those two movies.
In whipping up buzz, Marvel also had an impressive display on the comic-con floor, including Odin's massive gold throne, the scale model of The Destroy and various helmets from Thor. And, of course, they let fans get a close up look at Captain America's iconic shield from the film.