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Monday, November 4, 2002


An estimated 7 million DVDs and videocassettes of Spider-Man were sold on its first day of release on Friday.

With a projected 11 million DVDs and videocassettes to be sold in North America during its first weekend, the title is estimated to generate more than $190 million in retail revenue in North America during its first three days in the marketplace, it was announced Sunday by John Calley, Chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Having shipped an unequalled 26 million combined units in North America and with first day record-breaking sales, Spider-Man is on track to become the biggest selling DVD title in history. The title will also set an industry record for the most revenue ever generated by a studio in a single weekend on a single title.

"With more than a billion dollars in worldwide revenues to date on this single title, the success of Spider-Man is simply staggering," Calley said. "It took a true superhero to accomplish this phenomenal fete and the dividend for Sony Pictures Entertainment will be the most successful year in the studio's history."

Spider-Man's theatrical performance and now home entertainment release have broken virtually every major milestone, including the following:

* More than $800 million worldwide.

* Biggest opening weekend in Hollywood history.

* Biggest single day box-office.

* Fastest film in history to ever reach the $100 million mark (3 days), the $200 million mark (9 days), the $300 million mark (22 days) and the $350 million mark (31 days).


The interior of the White House was recreated for a scene in the upcoming X-Men sequel.

In particular an accurate version of the Oval Office was built, including the new carpet design. The many authentic-looking paintings, including portraits of former presidents, are prints which were convincingly textured.

"The President's desk has been painstakingly reproduced," said X2 production designer Guy Dyas. "The crest at the front of the desk was hand-crafted in clay, molded. It's an incredibly elaborate desk that has probably taken two months of solid work to create."

Although Fox hasn't confirmed it, it's believed that the publicity shot of Nightcrawler (played by Alan Cumming) is from a White House set.

In other X-Men sequel news: * Aaron Stanford plays Pyro, who at least initially is part of the X-Men. However, according to Fox, "The filmmakers were looking to include a character who wanted to be part of the X-Men, but whose powers ultimately would overcome the X-Men philosophy."

* Gordon Smith is returning as make-up designer, and Louise Mingenbach is the costume designer.

* Halle Berry: An MTV Movie Special - featuring the actress who plays Storm - on Monday, Nov. 11 at 9 p.m. Berry is promoting her appearance in the new James Bond movie.

The special will also air on Tuesday, Nov. 12 at 1:30 p.m.; Thursday, Nov. 14 at 6 p.m.; and Friday, Nov. 15 at 10 a.m.


Paul Dini said told The Continuum that even after five years, working with Alex Ross continues to provide surprises.

Dini and Ross are collaborating on JLA: Secret Origins, a 48-page, oversized one-shot will also serve to preview next year's JLA: Liberty and Justice, the fifth in their series featuring DC Comics' iconic characters.

"I really liked the monochromatic technique he used for the different hero spreads," Dini said of Ross' work in Secret Origins.

"He took a single color that in some way defined a character and constructed the spread's entire palate around it. And in many cases, he stayed away from the obvious choices. For instance, he did not use green for Martian Manhunter's spread, but opted for a reddish, adobe tone to depict the ruined landscape of Mars. As all we see of the former Martian civilization is that image of desolation, the colors that symbolize loneliness and isolation stay with J'Onn J'Onzz throughout his origin.

"For Hawkman and Hawkgirl, Alex chose sepia tones which recalled images of classic swashbuckling movie serials like Flash Gordon.

"He breaks the rule slightly in the final spread which introduces the League in its final form and spotlights some supporting members, but even there he's careful coordinate each character to an appropriate color scheme - Zatanna is rendered in black and lavender, Phantom Stranger is in melancholy shades of gray and faded yellow, Elongated Man is shown against sunny, warm colors, and Adam Strange is shown as a flash of red and silver against a blue futuristic cityscape. That's one of my favorite images in the whole book.

Dini said that writing JLA: Secret Origins was "a lot of fun."

"For the different origin spreads I used a technique similar to the one I use when I adapt a classic comic character for animation," Dini said. "I went back to the earliest versions of the JLA characters, took what I felt was most important to their backstories, streamlined some details but otherwise tried to remain faithful to the characterizations that most of the fans remember."

JLA: Secret Origins will arrive in stores on Nov. 13 and will cost $7.95.


Marvel Double-Shot #4, concluding the mini-series featuring a pair of stories, will spotlight Iron Man and Doctor Strange.

The Iron Man story is written by Greg Rucka, with art by Klaus Janson.

Here's how Marvel describes the story: "When beautiful women and money beyond measure aren't enough to make a man happy, what possibly is?"

The Doctor Strange story is by Michael T. Gilbert.

Here's how Marvel describes the story: "Michael T. Gilbert takes us into the mysterious world of the Bottle Imp."

Marvel Double-Shot #4 will arrive in stores on February. Like the previous three issues, it will feature a cover by Joe Jusko.


Fox has released details for the next three episodes of The Simpsons, which include a slew of rock stars and guest voices from Batman stars Adam West and Burt Ward.

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones, Lenny Kravitz, Tom Petty, Elvis Costello and Brian Setzer guest star as themselves on "How I Spent My Summer Vacation," which kicks off the show's 14th season on Sunday.

Homer is secretly videotaped in a taxi cab (a la "Taxi Cab Confessions") complaining that having a family meant kissing his dream of becoming a rock 'n' roll star goodbye. When his family hears this, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie surprise Homer and drop him off at "The Rolling Stones Rock 'N' Roll Fantasy Camp" run by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. There Homer lives the life of rockstar with a little help from guest stars Lenny Kravitz, Elvis Costello, Tom Petty and Brian Setzer.

On Nov. 17, Bart and Lisa suddenly find themselves in the same class when Lisa gets promoted to the third grade and Bart gets held back for being a poor student in "Bart Vs. Lisa Vs. 3rd Grade." As the first day of class progresses, Lisa finds the new curriculum challenging, while Bart finds it redundant. Concluding that Bart is better student, the teacher moves Bart and Lisa's desk together until Lisa can catch up to her big brother resulting in sibling rivalry.

In "Large Marge" Sunday, Nov. 24, Marge mistakenly thinks Homer is eyeing other women. In an effort to uplift her appeal, she decides to get plastic surgery to look younger. But the surgery goes awry when Marge receives breast implants that were meant for a younger patient. Meanwhile, Bart and Milhouse catch an episode of Batman and Robin (guest stars Adam West and Burt Ward), where they battle Clown Man -- who coincidentally looks a lot like a younger version of Krusty.


The WB has released 10 new images from "Spin The Bottle," the episode of Angel scheduled to air on Sunday.

Here's how the network describes the episode:

"When Lorne (Andy Hallett) performs a spell on Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter) to restore her memory, it inadvertently causes the gang to revert back to their high school personas and leaves them with no memories of each other. Eventually, they discover that the only way to reverse the spell is to kill a vampire, just as Angel (David Boreanaz) realizes that he is one.

"Spin The Bottle" was written by series creator Joss Whedon, who is pictured in several of the images. Click on the thumbnails for larger and more complete images.


Archie Comics has released its solicitation information for February.

For a complete rundown, CLICK HERE.


Alternative Comics has provided The Continuum with a rundown of its projects through 2003.

Following is a rundown:

December: Magic Whistle #8 by Sam Henderson.

January 2003: Cusp by Thomas Herpich.

February 2003: Urban Hipster #1 reprint by David Lasky and Greg Stump; Urban Hipster #2 by David Lasky and Greg Stump; When I'm Old: The Collected Stories of Gabrielle Bell TPB; Hickee TPB by Graham Annable and his animation pals; Humor Can Be Funny TPB by Sam Henderson; Strum and Drang: Great Moments in Rock 'n' Roll TPB by Joel Orff; Danger Force Five Singles Club Music CD by James Kochalka.

March 2003: Inside Vineyland TPB by Lauren Weinstein, a Xeric grant winner; Same Difference and Other Stories GN by Derek Kirk, a Xeric grant winner; Queen's Day GN by Leela Corman, a Xeric grant winner; Bipolar #1 reprint by Tomer Hanuka and Assaf Hanuka.

April 2003: Bipolar #4 by Tomer Hanuka and Assaf Hanuka; Bipolar #2 reprint by Tomer Hanuka and Assaf Hanuka; From The Curve: Grand Gestures TPB by Robert Ullman.

June 2003: Sweater Weather GN by Sara Varon; June 2003: A Fine Mess #2 by Matt Madden.

Spring 2003: Rubber Necker #3 by Nick Bertozzi; Magic Whistle #9 by Sam Henderson; Peanutbutter & Jeremy's Greatest Adventures TPB by James Kochalka.

Summer 2003: Fancy Froglin full color GN by James Kochalka.

Summer or fall 2003: Grickle volume 2 by Graham Annable.

Fall or winter 2003: Reinventing Everything GN by James Kochalka.


Aquaman #1 will arrive in stores on Dec. 11 from DC Comics. The issue is written by Rick Veitch, with art by Yvel Guichet and Mark Propst and a cover by Alex Maleev.

Here's how DC describes the issue:

"It's Aquaman as you've never seen him before. The aftermath of JLA's 'The Obsidian Age' has left Aquaman hated by his former subjects and exiled from the life-giving ocean he once called home. Battered and left to perish on an exposed reef, Aquaman discovers - to his horror - that all the denizens of the deep are instructed to attack him without mercy. But though his beloved ocean is off-limits, a mysterious freshwater lake may give him more than just sanctuary."

Aquaman #1 will be 32 pages and will cost $2.50.



  • Here's a first look at the covers to Superman: Day of Doom #2-4 and Forge #10.


  • Coming Tuesday: TV news - and much more!!!

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