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Tuesday, May 25, 2004

WITCHBLADE/WOLVERINE'S ERIC BASALDUA

Witchblade/Wolverine, a crossover written by Chris Claremont pairing the popular characters from Top Cow and Marvel, is scheduled for release on Wednesday. The Continuum caught up with artist Eric Basaldua at Wizard World Philadelphia over the weekend to talk about the project.

To read the interview and see eight preview pages from the book, CLICK HERE.

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IMAGE'S ART OF GREG HORN

Image Comics on Aug. 4 will release The Art of Greg Horn, hardcover retrospective, complete with step-by-step tutorial and annotated comments from Horn.

The book measures 9 inches by 12 inches and will be 144 pages. In addition to his work for Marvel Comics, the book will spotlight Horn's non-comics work, much of which may be unfamiliar to comic book fans.

"I think the big surprise of this book will be the stuff most fans don't even know I've done," Horn said. "I've been pretty fortunate the last two years and have my foot in three doors: That is, comics, video games, and advertising. Somehow, I got on a roll with Playstation, XBOX, and PCGAMER magazines and I have illustrated nearly 35 covers!"

The book will be available in two separate versions. In addition to the standard hardcover, there will be 1,500 limited signed and numbered editions available. Each page has been individually designed to compliment the artwork and most of the artwork will be annotated with editorial or creative comments

Horn will also take readers through a step-by-step tutorial on digital art.

"Half of my fan e-mails are questions about how I accomplish the art, so I made sure to get this in. There are also a few pages with side-by-side comparisons of pencils to final painted art," Horn said.

According to Image Comics Publisher Erik Larsen, Horn's book is the beginning on a line from the publisher.

"This is the first of many art books to be forthcoming from Image Comics," Larsen said. "As many readers know, Image has long been associated with some of the most talented artists in the funnybook field. It only makes sense that we'd start putting together art books that showcase the fine work of these top talents."

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ANIMATED DVDS FROM MARVEL, LIONS GATE

Marvel Enterprises and Lions Gate Entertainment announced on Tuesday that they have entered into an agreement to develop, produce and distribute original animated DVD features based on certain characters within the Marvel Universe.

Under the terms of the arrangement, Marvel and Lions Gate plan to commence production immediately on eight original animated projects in either 2-D or 3-D format with the first title expected to be released by Lions Gate in late 2005.

The announcement was made by Lions Gate Chief Executive Officer Jon Feltheimer and Avi Arad, Chairman and CEO Marvel Studios.

"More than $2 billion in DVDs based on Marvel characters have been sold and Marvel's animated television projects have been very successful, so this is a natural evolution for the company," Arad said. "Lions Gate has been a great partner for us and this new venture will further solidify the Marvel name as one of the preeminent brands in entertainment."

Feltheimer said, "This deal reflects the next chapter in our ongoing relationship with Marvel. The Marvel Universe maintains an outstanding and loyal fan base that craves fresh material featuring Marvel's super heroes. We're confident that we can take Marvel's extensive library of popular characters with compelling storylines and create action-packed, appealing animated made-for-DVD movies."

Under terms of the agreement, Lions Gate will provide Marvel with licensing fees for character rights and fund all of the development, production, distribution and marketing for each title. Marvel will spearhead creative development and production. After each animated project's home video window expires, the companies may exploit the movies in other entertainment media domestically and internationally including television and Video On Demand (VOD). Both companies will share in the profits from the venture.

Marvel will choose from a roster of leading production partners, including Lions Gate's own animation production partner, CineGroupe. Each animated picture will have a minimum running time of 66 minutes and specific titles and characters chosen for animation will be announced at a later date.

As announced in February, Lions Gate has been granted licenses to develop, produce and distribute theatrical film releases based upon Iron Fist and Black Widow. Lions Gate and Marvel already plan to make a sequel to their April release The Punisher.



VIPER COMICS FOR AUGUST

Viper Comics has released its solicitation information for August.

For a complete rundown, with cover images, CLICK HERE.

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ARCANA'S STARKWEATHER

Arcana Studios' fourth title Starkweather, will arrive in stores on August.

The book is written by David Rodriguez.

"Here's the short story is that Alexander Starkweather," Rodriguez said. "He is one of those nobodies we know from our lives. One of those guys whose only remarkable trait is that he is SO mediocre. He is 25 years old and up until a few months ago lived in his grandmother's basement and flipped pancakes for a living and that is all he wanted out of life. And this is the guy who discovers he is actually a witch and has to keep the balance of magic so the reality stays in one piece.

"I've always wanted to tell a story about a character who lacked both the skills and ambition to be a hero, but still tries to do the right thing. A very human character that gets the crap kicked out of him at every turn but gets back up and keeps fighting. It's why I consider Die Hard one of the best action movies ever. He was human and real and in way over his head. But you felt for him and could identify with him more than an indestructible guy."

Said Arcana's Sean OšReilly: "This is one of those projects we knew we had to get. David is very talented and his background has had him develop some of the best games we've seen. When he wanted to venture into the world of comics it only seemed nature that he come to Arcana. This is a great story and you can't help but feel for Starkweather."

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BRIEFLY

  • Image Comics has announced plans to publish Allen Curtis and Mark Beachum's Syphons Graphic Novel, an updated look at the superhero genre, originally produced by Now Comics in the early 1990s. Syphons is a mature science-fiction thriller about four young adults who accidentally acquire intergalactic "siphoning" powers and are burdened with the task of protecting Earth from an alien race hell-bent on destruction.

    According to editor Tony C. Caputo, Syphon was one of the two original color Now Comics in 1986, and was resurrected in 1993 with Curtis writing the book, and Beachum handling the art. Produced from a set of recently uncovered original films of the long lost artwork, the Syphons Graphic Novel was originally scheduled to be published by Now Comics 3.0 this month.

    "I'm thrilled to have Image Comics publish Syphons," says Caputo, the President of Now Comics. "This will expose Allen and Mark's work to so many more relevant readers. I was always fond of the story, and I believe it's an exceptional project, now in the hands of an exceptional publisher!"

    The 96-page book features a brand new wraparound cover by Beachum.

  • Coming Wednesday: DC news -- and much more!!!

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    COMICS CONTINUUM BACK ISSUES

    In case you missed The Continuum's recent coverage, here are some links:

    * For Thursday, May 20, including Marvel and Dark Horse first looks, CLICK HERE.

    * For Wednesday, May 19, including Marvel and DC first looks, CLICK HERE.

    * For Tuesday, May 18, including Smallville and Global Frequency news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Monday, May 17, including DC Comics' solicitations for August, CLICK HERE.

    * For Saturday, May 15, including news on the Mutant X season finale, CLICK HERE.

    * For Friday, May 14, including news on Justice League Unlimited, CLICK HERE.

    * For Thursday, May 13, including Dark Horse solicitations for August and Spawn news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Wednesday, May 12, including Top Cow news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Tuesday, May 11, including Justice League and Teen Titans animated news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Monday, May 10, including Catwoman movie news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Saturday, May 8, including Justice League animated news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Friday, May 7, including Justice League animated news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Thursday, May 6, including Marvel news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Wednesday, May 5, including Hugh Jackman talking about a third X-Men movie, CLICK HERE.

    * For Tuesday, May 4, including Marvel movie news and more from WonderCon, CLICK HERE.

    * For Monday, May 3, including Justice League news and more from WonderCon, CLICK HERE.

    * For Sunday, May 2, including Spider-Man 2 news from WonderCon, CLICK HERE.

    * For Saturday, May 1, including news from WonderCon, CLICK HERE.

    * For Friday, April 30, including Smallville news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Thursday, April 29, including Marvel, DC and Image first looks, CLICK HERE.

    * For Wednesday, April 28, including Smallville news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Tuesday, April 27, including Angel news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Monday, April 26, including Spider-Man 2 news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Saturday, April 24, including Marvel news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Friday, April 23, including Marvel news, CLICK HERE.

    * For Thursday, April 22, including Image Comics' solicitations for July, CLICK HERE.

    * For Wednesday, April 21, including DC Comics first looks, CLICK HERE.

    * For Tuesday, April 20, including Marvel Comics' solicitations for July, CLICK HERE.

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