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THURSDAY, JULY 13, 2006

MORE NEWS ON THURSDAY

Check back later Thursday night for an updated report.

SCI FI'S PAINKILLER JANE GOES TO SERIES

Sci Fi has greenlit production on Painkiller Jane, a live-action television series from Vancouver's Insight Film Studios and Kickstart Entertainment based on the Event Comics character created by Jimmy Palmiotti and Joe Quesada.

Production on 22 one-hour episodes will begin next month at Insight Film Studios in Vancouver. The series will premiere on Sci Fi starting in January, followed by a domestic broadcast weekly syndication window in fall 2007.

Emmanuelle Vaugier starred in the pilot film, which premiered Dec. 10, 2005, but the cast for the series -- including the title role -- has not yet been finalized, according to the network.

Vaugier has been a regular guest-star on CBS' Two and a Half Men.

In an interview with The Continuum the day before the pilot film aired, Vaugier said, "I would love to do Painkiller Jane the series. I think it would be a fun and challenging role to develop over the course of a season."

The pilot movie also starred Eric Dane, who played Multiple Man in X-Men: The Last Stand, and Richard Roundtree, who will playing Blade's father in Spike TV's Blade: The Series.

Here's how Sci Fi describes the show, which has a different plot than the pilot:

"Painkiller Jane is the story of Jane Vasko, a young researcher trying to make a difference as the world faces its greatest drug addiction epidemic. When Jane catches wind of a budding conspiracy, and a secret research program within her corporation, she turns DEA informant. Thus threatening to expose corruption within one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, Jane becomes a target. However, she is accidentally exposed to an experimental 'cure' that renders her impervious to sickness and injury but not pain. Unfortunately for Jane, these powers come at a price: she has less than a month left to live before the cure's unstable nature overtakes her. Jane continues to develop new abilities. After each injury, she heals stronger than she had been. But the pain remains and intensifies as she races to turn the tables on her pursuers, and save her own life."

The pilot film aired to strong ratings and has also been successful in repeats.

Look for more on Painkiller Jane soon here in The Continuum.

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MARVEL PRESS CONFERENCE: WOLVERINE: ORIGINS

Marvel Comics staged a telephone press conference on Thursday afternoon with writer Daniel Way and editor Axel Alonso, in anticipation of a big event in Wolverine: Origins #5.

To read the highlights, CLICK HERE.

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X-MEN TITLES UPDATE

Marvel Comics on Thursday announced that the current story arcs in Uncanny X-Men and X-Men are selling "at a Civil War-like pace" and released preview pages for upcoming issues.

Marvel also announced that the new arcs "Supernovas" -- running in X-Men by Mike Carey and Chris Bachalo -- and "The Rise and Fall of the Shi'Ar Empire" -- running in Uncanny by Ed Brubaker and Billy Tan -- will not be collected until after their conclusion. Both the Uncanny X-Men and X-Men story arcs will be collected in an oversized hardcover first featuring all 12 issues of each arc.

"I've got to admit, I was really nervous about how my first issue was going to be received - even more nervous after Ed's spectacular open on Uncanny last week," Carey said. "You get so close to your own stuff, you never know whether it's any good or not: but now I can breathe again. It's really beyond cool that so many people have given us this vote of confidence. Now we're going to live up to it."

"Overwhelmed, is how I feel," Brubaker said. "I never imagined I'd be writing Uncanny X-Men, even as a kid - I wanted to pencil it once, but that's another story -- so to suddenly be here, and getting such a great response from both fans and retailers is really humbling.

"And seeing how much people are digging Billy's art is a real bonus. I think Billy will go down as one of the classic X artists by the end of this arc, because all the stuff I've seen from upcoming issues looks even better. We've only scratched the surface of this story, and I can guarantee you, no one sees what's coming up, especially not the X-Men."

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FIRST LOOKS

For covers and five- to six-page previews of upcoming titles, CLICK HERE.

Titles include Hunter-Killer #6 from Image Comics and Spider-Man Family: Spider-Man's Amazing Friends from Marvel Comics.

Look for more First Looks on Friday here in The Continuum.

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JLU, BATMAN BEYOND DVDS

Warner Home Video has announced Oct. 24 release dates for Justice League Unlimited: The Complete First Season and Batman Beyond: Season 2 on DVD.

The JLU set will contain four discs and will cost $44.98.

The Batman Beyond set also will contain four discs and will cost $44.98.

Click on the thumbnails for larger images of the box art.

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VIRGIN TEAMS WITH JOHN WOO, GARTH ENNIS

Virgin Comics is collaborating with Tiger Hill Entertainment, filmmaker John Woo and partner Terence Chang's creative shingle, and Garth Ennis to create Seven Brothers.

The comic book series is set to debut in mid-October, it was announced on Thursday by Sharad Devarajan, Virgin Comics' chief executive.

Yoshitaka Amano will be painting covers for the series, and Greg Horn will provide a variant for the first issue.

"For me, working in comics is quite comfortable -- it's like the ultimate storyboard," Woo said. "Garth has taken a seed of an idea I had about famous Chinese folklore to a whole new level that creates a modern, global story. The depth that Garth brings to his writing and the visuals that the Virgin comics team and artists like Amano contribute creates an art form with comics that is unique and yet, clearly a brother to the film medium."

"We see creating Seven Brothers as a comic book first, which is in turn the perfect springboard to take this title into film and games," Chang said.

Woo's Seven Brothers is the debut comic of the Director's Cut line of books from filmmakers. Virgin Comics plans to announce several more partnerships in the coming months.

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BRIEFLY

* UDON's exclusives for Comic-Con International in San Diego next week include Convention Exclusive Hardcover -- Street Fighter The Unlimate Edition, limited to 500 copies; Summer Sketchbook 2006; Chun-Li and Sakura art prints by Omar Dogan, limited to 100 each; Eternal Challenge Hardcovers; G.I. Joe vs. Transformers covers; and Akuma Door Poster.

* Mazda and Spacedog will debut the Revved series of graphic novels at Comic-Con International. Revved is being published by Top Cow Productions and developed into a television series by Fox Television Studios.

Appearing at the Top Cow booth will be Revved writer Jeremy Hall, artist David Nakayama and colorist Blond.

* The Panini Group announced on Thursday that it has signed a contract with Virgin Comics to become its long-term master licensee for comic books, comic magazines, trade paperbacks and graphic novels, in Europe (UK and Ireland excluded) and in all of Latin America.

* Archie Comics is giving away the trade paperback The Love Showdown for the first 300 people who attend the Archie Comics panel at the Comic-Con International San Diego. The panel is scheduled for Sunday, July 23, at 10:30 a.m.

* IDW Publishing has named Justin Eisinger an editorial assistant and website manager.

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COMICS CONTINUUM BACK ISSUES

In case you missed The Continuum's recent coverage, here are some links. Click on the date to get the day's full report.

* Saturday, July 8: Blade: The Series episodes, Legion of Super Heroes animated, Fantastic Four on HBO, Who Wants to Be a Superhero contestants and Superman Returns box office.

* Friday, July 7: Dark Horse Comics for October, The Amazing Screw-On Head, The Batman and First Looks.

* Thursday, July 6: Spider-Man Unmasked press conference, Marvel First Looks, DC First Looks and Legion of Super Heroes animated.

* Wednesday, July 5: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Marvel TV/movie roundup, Marvle Zombies hardcover and First Looks.

* Tuesday, July 4: Cliff Chiang on Doctor 13, First Looks and Bandai's Witchblade manga.

* Monday, July 3: Wolverine: Origins' Daniel Way, First Looks and Who Wants to Be a Superhero?

* Sunday, July 2: DC Comics' 52 and Marvel panels at Heroes Con, Superman Returns box office and Narwain's Fiendish Fables.

* Saturday, July 1: DC Nation, Joe Quesada and Warren Ellis panels at Heroes Con, Superman Returns, Blade: The Series and First Looks.

* Friday, June, 30: Rosario Dawson panel at Heroes Con, Blade: The Series, Who Wants to Be a Superhero, Aspen Comics' Soulfire: Dying of the Light, Blue Water's Lost Raven and The Batman.

* Thursday, June, 29: Image Comics First Looks, Superman Returns, Image Comics' The Cross Bronx and Dynamite Entertainment roundup.

* Wednesday, June, 28: Superman Returns, Marvel Comics First Looks, DC Comics First Looks and Krypto the Superdog in July.

* Tuesday, June, 27: Spider-Man 3, Marvel Comics First Looks, Civil War, Wolverine: Origins, Top Cow's Freshmen, Arcana Studio for September, The Batman in July, Lone Ranger and DC First Looks.

* Monday, June, 26: Civil War special, Superman Returns, Spider-Man 3, Teen Titans episodes, Komikwerks for September and Silent Devil's Antigone.

* Sunday, June, 25: Blade: The Series, Superman Returns, Oni Press for September and First Looks.

* Saturday, June, 24: Spider-Man 3, Starz's Comics on Film, Ali Russell writes Isis, Image Comics First Looks and Archie Comics First Looks.

* Friday, June, 23: Iron Man movie, NBC's Heroes, Zack Snyder to direct Watchmen, Marvel Comics First Looks, Heroic Publishing for September and Family Guy's 100th episode.

* Thursday, June, 22: Superman Returns, Devil's Due for September, Marvel Comics First Looks and Criminal.

* Wednesday, June, 21: Ultimate Avengers 2, Blade: The Series, Marvel First Looks and DC First Looks.

* Tuesday, June, 20: Marvel Comics for September, Image Comics for September, Civil War #2 second printing, Marvel First Looks and Top Cow First Looks.

* Monday, June, 19: DC Comics for September, Archie Comics for September, Boom! Studios for September, Civil War: Cable and Deadpool and First Looks.

* Sunday, June, 18: Image Comics First Looks, Justice League DVD, Witchblade animated and Teen Choice awards.

* Saturday, June, 17: Sci Fi's Amazing Screw-On Head, Spider-Man 3, Lois & Clark DVD, After Hours' Impossible Tales and First Looks.

* Friday, June, 16: Spider-Man Unmasked, IDW Publishing or September, Superman: Brainiac Attacks, BlueWater/Alias First Looks, DC tops May orders and Ezra model winner.

* Thursday, June, 15: Aspen Comics for September, Civil War #5 cover, Civil War press conference, First Looks, Superman Returns and Liberty Meadows: Cover Girl.

* Wednesday, June, 14: Superman Returns, Marvel First Looks, DC First Looks, Sam Noir: Samurai Detective, 12 Gauge's James O'Barr and Cully Hamner and Snakes on a Plane comic.




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