Category Archives: Comic Books

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker – Allegiance Coming From Marvel Comics

At San Diego Comic-Con Marvel Comics and Lucasfilm have revealed a four-issue prequel comic book for the upcoming Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker movie, which will be written by Ethan Sacks with art by Luke Ross.

Returning cast members for The Rise of Skywalker include Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo and Billie Lourd. Joining the cast are Naomi Ackie (Doctor Who), Richard E. Grant (Logan), Dominic Monaghan (Lord of the Rings) and Keri Russell (The Americans), who will also be joined by veteran Star Wars actors Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels and Billy Dee Williams, who will reprise his role as Lando Calrissian. The role of Leia Organa will once again be played by Carrie Fisher, using previously unreleased footage shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

In addition to directing, Abrams co-wrote the screenplay with Chris Terrio (Argo, Justice League). Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, and Abrams will produce, with Callum Greene and Jason McGatlin executive producing. Composer John Williams, who has scored every chapter in the Star Wars saga since 1977’s A New Hope, will return to a galaxy far, far away with Rise of Skywalker.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is scheduled for release on December 20.

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Tim Burton’s Batman To Have Free, Surprise Screening Saturday In San Diego

DC and partner AT&T are holding a surprise screening of Tim Burton’s Batman Saturday evening inside the Batman Experience at the pop-up Comic-Con Museum in San Diego’s Balboa Park, following the Dark Knight’s induction into the Comic-Con Museum Character Hall of Fame Wednesday night. 

The screening takes place at 7:30 local time, will have a “special introduction” by producer Michael E. Uslan and is free to the public, not just Comic-Con badge holders.

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Batman Beyond: The Complete Series Limited Edition To Be Released Digitally On October 15 & Blu-ray On October 29

Batman Beyond, the landmark animated television series that illuminated the imagination of a new generation of Batman fans with its creation of an altogether new hero, is celebrating its 20th anniversary – and you get the gift! Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has remastered the heralded series for its first-ever presentation on Blu-ray in the all-encompassing Batman Beyond: The Complete Animated Series Limited Edition, arriving on Digital ($49.99 SRP USA, $59.99 SRP Canada) starting October 15, 2019 and in a stunning box set ($99.99 SRP USA, $119.99 SRP Canada) on October 29, 2019. Distribution in Canada will be day-and-date with the USA, Pre-orders are now available.

The extraordinary Batman Beyond: The Complete Animated Series Limited Edition package features approximately 1,500 minutes of entertainment spread over four Blu-ray™ discs, plus the two bonus discs of enhanced content. In addition to a newly-remastered Blu-ray presentation of Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, there are 15 featurettes on the bonus discs, highlighted by two new inside looks at the beloved television series, led by Nostalgic Tomorrow, a gathering of Batman Beyond production talent and cast led by executive producer Bruce Timm and actors Kevin Conroy and Will Friedle, the voices of Batman and Terry McGinnis, respectively. The bonus discs also spotlight four episodes with audio commentary from Timm and select members of the production team.

Collectibles within the stunning packaging include an exclusive chrome Batman Beyond Funko POP, and four beautifully-designed lenticular art cards produced especially for Batman Beyond: The Complete Animated Series Limited Edition. This ultimate collectors Blu-ray box set will be individually numbered for a Limited Edition release of 50,000.

Produced by Warner Bros. Animation, Batman Beyond premiered on January 10, 1999 to instant ratings and critical success. The series would run for three seasons, covering 52 total episodes and a full-length animated film, Batman Beyond: The Return of the Joker. Nominated for nine Emmy Awards, Batman Beyond would ultimately take home two Emmys – including Outstanding Special Class Animated Program in 2001 – as well as three Annie Awards.

Of the 52 original Batman Beyond episodes, 41 have been fully-remastered from either their original 35mm film source or the uncommon format “OCND,” the original camera negative digital (a digital scan of original negative). Lines and resolution have been enhanced, and dust and dirt have been removed – however, cell dirt remains to not disturb the original picture. Included in the remastering was the removal of grain, resulting in enhanced colors. The remastering process does cause a slight aspect ratio change (approximately 3% loss of screen image) 

Due to time-worn irreparable damage, the remaining 11 episodes were “Smart Rezzed” from standard definition Digibeta video. The process provides for significant enhanced resolution and improvement of the original source material in converting from standard to high definition, though it does sacrifice horizontal lines for clearer image and color representation. While still a marked improvement over the original video, viewers will notice a slight difference between the Remastered and the Up-Rezzed final footage. The 11 affected episodes are: “Eyewitness,” “Final Cut,” “The Last Resort,” “Armory,” “Sneak Peek,” “The Eggbaby,” “Zeta,” “Plague,” “April Moon,” “Sentries of the Lost Cosmos” and “Speak No Evil.”

The creative team behind the breakthrough animated series was headed by the producing quartet of Bruce Timm, Paul Dini, Alan Burnett and Glen Murakami, alongside executive producer Jean MacCurdy and associate producer Shaun McLaughlin. Shirley Walker composed the award-winning score with the Dynamic Music Partners trio of Lolita Ritmanis, Kristopher Carter and Michael McCuistion, while 8-time Emmy Award winner Andrea Romano guided an impressive collection of actors as casting/dialogue director. Butch Lukic, Dan Riba and Curt Gida directed the majority of episodic animation along with James Tucker, Kyung Won Lim and Yukio Suziki. Primary story editors and writers on the series were Burnett and Dini with Bob Goodman, Rich Fogel, Hilary Bader and Stan Berkowitz.

The Batman Beyond cast was spearheaded by Kevin Conroy, the fan favorite voice of The Dark Knight as established in the landmark Batman: The Animated Series. Will Friedle (Boy Meets World, Kim Possible) created the character of Terry McGinnis, Batman’s protégé. Veteran voiceover actresses Cree Sumner (Codename: Kids Next Door, Drawn Together) and Lauren Tom (Friends, The Joy Luck Club, Futurama) were series regulars as Max and Dana Tan, respectively.

The guest cast included a healthy collection of film and primetime television stars spanning from Academy Award nominees Paul Winfield, Stockard Channing, William H. Macy, Teri Garr and Michael McKean; Emmy Award winners John Ritter, Wayne Brady, Seth Green, Tim Curry, David Warner and Patton Oswalt; Golden Globe winners Stacy Keach, Amanda Donohoe and Jill Eikenberry; four Grammy Award winners led by Ice-T; and five members of the Hollywood Walk of Fame – Macy and Ritter along with George Takei, Michael Ansara and Mark Hamill. The cast also included legends of the entertainment industry and several young actors heading toward stardom, like Adrienne Barbeau, Kate Jackson, Angie Harmon, Linda Hamilton, Clancy Brown, Gary Cole, Ed Begley Jr., Wendie Malick, Cary Elwes, Olivia Hussey, Kurtwood Smith, Robert Patrick, Ian Ziering, CCH Pounder, Frank Welker, Johnny Galecki, Pauley Perrette, Michael Rosenbaum and Diedrich Bader.

All totaled, the Batman Beyond cast featured actors with laurels totaling five Academy Award nominations, 47 Emmy Awards, 206 Emmy nods, four Gold Globe Awards, 45 Golden Globe nominations, three Grammy Awards and nine nominations, and five actors forever enshrined with stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“Batman Beyond elevated the animated adventures of The Dark Knight to even greater heights, providing an edgier, faster-moving, more contemporary take on crime-fighting in Gotham with an inspiring new character in Terry McGinnis,” said Mary Ellen Thomas, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Vice President, Family & Animation Marketing. “Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has long known the fans’ desire to see this series come to Blu-ray, and we’re excited to finally have the technology to elevate the quality of the original assets to an exquisite high-definition presentation packaged with compelling collectibles in a limited edition set, especially as fans celebrate Batman’s 80th anniversary this year.”

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Marvel’s Storyboards Starring Joe Quesada Is Heading to Disney+

As we near the U.S. launch of Disney+, the ultimate streaming destination for movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and more, on November 12, a new Marvel New Media non-fiction project has emerged! Marvel’s Storyboards is the third Marvel New Media series to head to Disney+, following the previously announced Marvel’s 616 (Working Title) and Marvel’s Hero Project.

The 12-episode non-fiction original series will follow Joe Quesada, Marvel’s Chief Creative Officer, as he explores the origin stories and creative drives of storytellers of all mediums, backgrounds, and experiences. Guests include Robert Lopez (songwriter, Book of Mormon, Avenue Q), Samhita Mukhopadhyay (Executive Editor, Teen Vogue), Hugh Jackman (Wolverine), Johnny Weir (Olympic figure skater), and Ed Viesturs (high-altitude mountaineer).

Each episode, which spans 10-15 minutes, of Marvel’s Storyboards will also dive into each visionary’s relationship with Marvel as well as a personal account of how they overcame a personal or professional hurdle.

In an interview with Wired, Quesada likened it to a popular series. “A comparison that everyone knows is Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown,” Quesada says. “We go on locations, but instead of food or culture being the focus, the focus is a guest, the way they tell stories, and their story.”

“The real thrill to me is to find out, ‘What’s your story?’ revealed Quesada. “People tell their stories in all different ways. It’s not just writing, drawing, or filming. Athletes tell stories in how they perform. Dancers tell stories with their bodies.”

The premiere date for Marvel’s Storyboard will be announced at a later date.

Disney+ is launching in late 2019, Disney+ will be the ultimate streaming destination for movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. From The Walt Disney Company’s Direct-to-Consumer and International segment, Disney+ will offer ad-free programming with a variety of original feature-length films, documentaries, live action and animated series and short-form content, along with unprecedented access to Disney’s incredible library of film and television entertainment. The service will also be the exclusive streaming home for films released by The Walt Disney Studios in 2019 and beyond, including “Captain Marvel,” “Avengers: Endgame,” “Toy Story 4,” “The Lion King,” “Aladdin,” and “Star Wars Episode IX.” The service will launch in the U.S. on November 12 for $6.99/month or $69.99/year.

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Taika Waititi To Direct Thor 4

Taika Waititi is returning to the Marvel Studios fold to direct Thor 4, the followup to his wildly successful 2017 sequel Thor: Ragnarok! However, due to conflicting dates with the superhero film, Waititi’s plans to direct Warner Bros. live-action adaptation of Akira have been pushed back until after Thor 4 is complete.

Thor: Ragnarok was a hit with critics and fans alike, taking the franchise in a more overtly comedic direction to the tune of over $854 million worldwide.

As for the director’s adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo’s classic manga and anime film Akira, a May 21, 2021 release date has now been pushed back indefinitely. Waititi was in the process of testing actors from around the world to star in the picture, which he previously hoped to cast with Asian teenage leads. Unfortunately script issues forced the project into rewrites to address certain concerns, and with some of them yet to be addressed the filmmaker is moving ahead to Thor 4. Warners still hopes to retain him to start work on the long-gestating Akira after the Marvel sequel is complete.

Waititi’s busy schedule also includes plans to write/direct a Time Bandits TV pilot for Apple TV+, as well as the episode of Star Wars series The Mandalorian he completed for Disney Plus. Waititi also has the WWII dramedy Jojo Rabbit (in which he also plays the role of Adolf Hitler) finished for release by Fox Searchlight on October 18, 2019. He is also helping Fox develop an animated version of the comic strip Flash Gordon.

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DC Collectibles To Unveil The 100th Statue In The Batman Black And White Collection At San Diego Comic Con

In celebration of the 80th anniversary, Warner Bros. Consumer Products and DC Collectibles announced today that the 100th Batman Black and White statue in the popular ongoing DC Collectibles line will be unveiled at the forthcoming San Diego Comic-Con Museum on July 17.

A special over 6-foot life-size version of the Todd McFarlane-designed statue will be revealed during a special ceremony recognizing DC’s iconic Super Hero, Batman, the inaugural inductee into the Comic-Con Museum Hall of Fame. 

The milestone #100 statue is based off McFarlane’s own cover of Batman issue #423. As with the previous 99 in the series, McFarlane’s design, reinforces the core value of DC Collectibles to represent the printed page in 3D form and pays homage to Batman’s rich legacy. 

Guests of the Museum will also have the rare opportunity to see the current 100-statue series throughout the week as part of The Batman Experience Powered by AT&T at the Comic-Con Museum in Balboa Park. Not only will #100 be revealed with its special life-size version, but #99 by Doug Mahnke will be making its first public appearance.

Following the Comic-Con Museum launch event titled, “The Gathering” which will feature a “black carpet reception,” the life-size #100 Black & White statue will be auctioned off with proceeds benefiting the Comic-Con Museum.

“To simply be a part of the 80th anniversary of a character that has always held such a special place in my heart is an honor,” McFarlane said. “But in designing this statue I truly feel like I’m adding to Batman’s legacy and in the process benefitting a hall of fame that will become an institution both for comic fans and the San Diego community.” 

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Stephen King & Owen King’s Sleeping Beauties Comes To IDW Publishing

IDW Publishing is proud to announce the early 2020 launch of Sleeping Beauties, a captivating comic book series based on the bestselling novel by Stephen King and Owen King. Author Rio Youers (The Forgotten Girl) and artist Alison Sampson (Winnebago Graveyard) will adapt the rich narrative of Sleeping Beauties to a ten-issue limited series under the watchful gaze of Stephen and Owen.

“We are so excited about Rio and Alison’s vision for Sleeping Beauties,” says Owen King. “We’ve been fans of Rio’s for years and Alison’s artwork is simply extraordinary. IDW couldn’t have found a better pairing.”

To which co-author Stephen King adds, “We’re looking forward to seeing our work in this exciting format.”

Sleeping Beauties explores a world where women have sunken into a deep, cocooned slumber, their dreams taking them to an idyllic other place. They can only wake if disturbed, which results in violent, feral behavior. Meanwhile, the men have inherited the Earth, their society devolving into barbarism. Provocative and absorbing, Sleeping Beauties is a gripping dark fantasy of gender dynamics, individuality, and toxic masculinity.

“To work on anything with the King name attached is surreal, dizzying, and somewhat terrifying,” says Youers. “As soon as my feet touch terra firma, I will focus on my goal: to stay true to the novel’s spirit, and to deliver a page-turning, visually impacting experience that will appeal to readers of both Stephen and Owen King’s fiction, and to comics fans the world over.”

“I’m thrilled to be able to work on Sleeping Beauties,” says Sampson. “The story is very suggestive for interesting art, with magical themes interwoven through a very real place setting in Appalachia, and the opportunity to draw some truly diverse people. Places, spaces, gender, bodies, character, relationships, political themes, emotions, a challenging (and almost certainly innovative) design job, and a great story – it’s all here. I cannot wait to share what we are making.”

“There was something magical about the combination of Stephen King’s and Owen King’s specific skills on the pages of the Sleeping Beauties novel, an alchemy that resulted in a story so of the moment and yet so timeless,” says IDW President & Publisher, Chris Ryall. “Rio and Allison are fashioning a graphic retelling that synthesizes that same sense of wonder while very much making the comic its own thing entirely. We’re ecstatic to be doing this with all involved.”

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Mythologies: Batman Print by Mauricio Abril 

Mauricio Abril’s tribute to the Caped Crusader focusses on key moments and aspects of Batman’s mythos. Available at Comic Con Booth 1947 and on his online store (mauricioabrilart.storenvy.com)

– 11×17″
– Printed on 100 lb heavy cover stock
– All prints are hand signed
– $20

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You Can Order A Life Sized Harley Quinn Statue For $5,200

DC Collectibles has created the ultimate Harley Quinn collectible: a full-sized, 1:1 scale statue of the Clown Princess of Crime herself. Harley is decked out in her iconic red, black and white costume as originally designed by animation legend Bruce Timm and sculpted by Jonathan Mattews.

The Harley Quinn 1:1 statue is a limited quantity showpiece that is a must-have for any Harley fan, Batman collector or your own comics shop. Don’t miss your chance to snag everyone’s favorite harlequin for your collection!

Measuring approximately 5’7″ tall, the fiberglass and resin statue retails for $5,200 and will ship in 5 crates with some assembly required. Expect it in specialty and comic book stores in December 2019.

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Marvel Studios Celebrates The In-Home Release of Avengers:Endgame With The “We Love You 3000” Tour

In celebration of the in-home release of “Avengers: Endgame,” Marvel Studios and directors Anthony and Joe Russo have teamed up to launch the “We Love You 3000” Tour as a way to thank the fans who have invested so deeply in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), making it the single most successful franchise in film history.

Special guests from Marvel Studios and the MCU will visit nine U.S. cities — beginning in San Diego at Comic-Con International on July 20 and ending in Anaheim at D23 Expo 2019 the weekend of Aug. 23-25— greeting and treating fans at each tour stop.  A total of 3,000 MCU Funko Pop Vinyl Figures will be distributed to fans throughout the tour as well as additional giveaways ranging from exclusive “Avengers: Endgame” prints to McDonald’s vouchers for a free Happy Meal plus an Avengers: Endgame Happy Meal toy to a MCU inspired sundaes and recipe cards courtesy of Ben & Jerry’s.

Best Buy will serve as the location for five “We Love You 3000” Tour stops, hosting in-store fan events to celebrate the nationwide release of Marvel Studios “Avengers: Endgame” on Blu-ray Aug. 13. Events will feature signings with Marvel Studios filmmakers and/or MCU talent; a special digital photo booth; specialty promotional giveaways, including MCU Funko Pop! Vinyl Figures and exclusive “Avengers: Endgame” prints; and much more.  Fans can also get their hands on the exclusive, limited edition “Avengers: Endgame” SteelBook and other collectable SteelBooks from the MCU at Best Buy stores across the country and on BestBuy.com.

Fan Events/Tour Stops:

July 20       San Diego, CA, – Comic-Con International – Directors Anthony & Joe Russo, Writers Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely and a special guest from the MCU

July 30           Everett, WA – Funko HQ – to be announced

Aug. 8             San Francisco, CA – Giants vs. Phillies at Oracle Park – Directors Anthony & Joe Russo at the San Francisco Giants’ Marvel Night

Aug. 13            Miami, FL – Best Buy store – to be announced

Aug. 13            Chicago, IL – Best Buy store – Directors Anthony & Joe Russo

Aug. 13            Torrance, CA, – Best Buy store – to be announced

Aug. 14            Minneapolis, MN, – Best Buy store – Directors Anthony & Joe Russo

Aug. 20            Cleveland, OH, – Best Buy store – Directors Anthony & Joe Russo

Aug. 23-25     Anaheim, CA, – D23 Expo 2019- to be announced

For more information on what’s taking place in each market, visit www.Marvel.com/WeLoveYou3000.

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