Monday, November 1, 2004
FANTASTIC FOUR MOVIE UPDATE
Marvel's Avi Arad said that the recent world press visits to the set of Fantastic Four in Vancouver, British Columbia, have alleviated outside anxiety over the film.
"There's no need to bite nails anymore," Arad said during Marvel's third-quarter conference call last week. "The movie's going to be spectacular."
The film -- scheduled for a July 1 release from 20th Century Fox -- has already generated 50 major licenees, with at least 10 more expected. This was despite a late start in the marketing areas due to the scheduling nature of the filming.
Arad said the film got the "ultimate" promotional partner in Burger King, and that Fantastic Four will be the restaurant chain's biggest promotion of the summer. He also noted the fact that the film features five main characters -- all with unique looks and powers -- provides "tremendous" licensing opportunities.
The first Fantastic Four movie toys from Toy Biz should be in stores in early May, and a videogame from Activision will be in stores a week before the film's release.
* To the left is Von Doom Industries stationery that was provided to the press at the recent event. Click on the thumbnail for a larger look.
* Behind-the-scenes promotional footage from the film leaked on into the Internet over the week. Although Fox asked the site that originated the material to take the footage down, many mirrors remain.
The segment, which lasts a little more than two minutes, featured each of the main actors, Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Michael Chiklis and Chris Evans, talking about their characters and their powers.
Perhaps the biggest revelation was the first look at Victor Von Doom with an armored head. Julian McMahon, who plays Doom, said, "He gets a cut on his forehead, which develops into this steel face that he gets. Eventually the whole thing takes over his body and he becomes the nemesis for the Fantastic Four."
* For coverage of the FF press conference, CLICK HERE.
SPIDER-MAN, MIB2 ON FOX
Fox has announced it will have the world broadcast premieres of two comics-inspired movies during the November sweeps.
The first Spider-Man movie -- starring Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst and Willem Dafoe -- will be broadcast on Thursday, Nov. 25 from 8-10:30 p.m. (ET/PT) as Fox stretches its prime-time hours on Thanksgiving night.
Here's how Fox describes the movie:
"A bite from a genetically engineered spider turns Peter Parker into a Spider-Man with superhuman abilities. Is even the amazing Spider-Man able to juggle a new job at the local newspaper, battle the evil Green Goblin and win the affections of his beautiful classmate, Mary Jane Watson?"
Men in Black 2 -- starring Will Smith, Tommy Lee Jones, Rosario Dawson and Laura Flynn Boyle -- will be broadcast on Saturday, Nov. 27 from 8-10 p.m. (ET/PT).
Here's how Fox describes the movie:
"Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith are back in black as scum-fighting super-agents Kay and Jay on a mission to save the world from a total intergalactic disaster."
Both films were released in theaters in 2002 from Sony/Columbia.
DEVIL'S DUE PUBLISHING FOR JANUARY
Devil's Due Publishing has released its solicitations for January.
For a complete rundown, with cover images, CLICK HERE.
For covers and two- to five-page previews of upcoming titles, CLICK HERE.
Titles include Menthu #4 from Hometown Productions, The Incredibles #1 from Dark Horse Comics, Hawaiian Dick: The Last Resort #2 from Image Comics and Breech #1 and Majestic #1 from DC Comics.
IMAGE'S GRAY AREA CONCLUDES
Image Comics' The Gray Area #3, from John Romita Jr. and co-writer Glen Brunswick, will conclude the saga of a man torn between heaven and hell. The issue, in stores on Nov. 10, will feature a pin-up gallery in the back of the book.
Contributing pin-ups are Terry Austin, John Cassaday, Colleen Doran, Butch Guice, Erik Larsen, Jimmy Palmiotti, John Romita, Sr., Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino.
The Gray Area is the story of Rudy Chance, a corrupt cop brutally executed for double-crossing a drug cartel. Instead of landing in hell, he finds himself in the Gray Area, forced to fight evil for an afterlife police force to gain his shot at redemption. In this concluding chapter, Chance has the opportunity to complete his mission on Earth, but to do so he'll first have to overcome the overpowering desire to seek revenge on his murderers.
The mini-series is inked by Klaus Janson and colored by Bill Crabtree.
Click on the thumbnails above for larger images.
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The WB has released two images from "Spell," the Wednesday, Nov. 10 episode of Smallville.
"After Lana (Kristin Kreuk) reads from a spell book written in the 1600s, she, Lois (Erica Durance) and Chloe (Allison Mack) become possessed by witches that had been burned at the stake. The three witches have come back seek revenge and search for the powerful Kryptonian crystals, wreaking havoc on the town in the process. Clark (Tom Welling) attempts to stop the witches but they strip him of his powers and force him to reveal the location of the crystal he hid in the cave."
Jeannot Szwarc directed the episode, which was written by Steven S. DeKnight.
Click on the thumbnails for larger and fuller images and look for more Smallville news soon here in The Continuum.
IDW Publishing has announced that not only is it collecting the entire run of over 80 issues of GrimJack, the classic First Comics book, it is also publishing a brand-new, six-issue mini-series.
The Legend Of GrimJack: Volume One by John Ostrander and Timothy Truman kicks off the quarterly reprint volumes. The first 128-page collection, presented in both a trade paperback edition and a deluxe, signed hardcover, starts off the stories from First Comics' Starslayer #10-18.
The initial volume concludes with the 28-page crossover with Mike Grell's swashbuckler, Starslayer. Ostrander and Truman also provide eight entirely new pages, plus unpublished art, introductions and a painted cover from Truman, all created under the auspices of original series editor Mike Gold.
"These stories have everything that's essential about GrimJack -- the setting, the concept, most of the supporting cast, the tragic backstory, the action, and the underlying sense of humor -- that made the character what he was," Ostrander said. "This was the ground floor and created a demand that quickly kicked Gaunt into his own book. There's no better place to start."
GrimJack: Killer Instinct, the six-issue mini-series, will launch in January. In this brand-new adventure by Ostrander and Truman and featuring John Gaunt, there's a firefight in The Pit and GrimJack is in the middle of the conflagration. His friends at Cadre have hired a beautiful vampire assassin to take him out. How does GrimJack save his neck -- and who winds up in possession of Munden's Bar, the nexus of all realities?
"Working on Grimjack is like coming home from a long war in a foreign land with a lot of new experiences under your belt and a ton of good stories to tell," Truman said.
Top Cow will also have four pieces of art that have been made into limited edition prints available for purchase at the convention. Prints include a cover by Adam Hughes from Tomb Raider #50, Marc Silvestri's cover to Darkness # 1/2, Michael Turner's Witchblade #25, and another image of Witchblade by Turner. Prints will be limited to 40 each.
Wizard World Texas will run Friday through Sunday. The Continuum will have bonus reports over the weekend from the show.
Click on the thumbnails for larger images.
COMICS CONTINUUM BACK ISSUES
In case you missed The Continuum's recent coverage, here are some links:
* For Friday, Oct. 22, including Marvel's solicitations for January, CLICK HERE.
* For Thursday, Oct. 21, including Marvel news, CLICK HERE.
* For Wednesday, Oct. 20, including Fantastic Four movie news, CLICK HERE.
* For Tuesday, Oct. 19, including Fantastic Four movie news, CLICK HERE.
* For Monday, Oct. 18, including DC Comics' solicitations for January, CLICK HERE.
* For Saturday, Oct. 16, including Image news, CLICK HERE.
* For Friday, Oct. 15, including Blade: Trinity news and Image Comics solicitations for January, CLICK HERE.
* For Thursday, Oct. 14, including Marvel and IDW news, CLICK HERE.
* For Wednesday, Oct. 13, including X-Men movie news, CLICK HERE.
* For Tuesday, Oct. 12, including Justice League animated news, CLICK HERE.
* For Monday, Oct. 11, including DC Comics news, CLICK HERE.
* For Saturday, Oct. 9, Dark Horse Comics' solicitations for January, CLICK HERE.
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