Legendary Comics unveiled a couple of new contributors: Guillermo del Toro and Grant Morrison. Del Toro will oversee a graphic novel based on his PACIFIC RIM neo-kaiju vs mecha film, which will be written by Travis Beacham , while Morrison is writing THE ANNIHILATOR, a Hollywood twist on the story of Faust where a man with a brain tumor has to beat writer’s block to save the world. THE ANNIHILATOR will be released next year as a six-issue miniseries, artist to be determined, although Morrison noted the artist is his “first choice.”
Morrison mentioned that the story is inspired by some stories he heard when he first moved to Hollywood. “It’s partially inspired by Ben Hecht,” he told The Beat, “who was a screenwriter of the 30s and 40s. But the beginning will remind you of Tom Sizemore.” (Google that for some ick factor.) As in most Morrison stories, a bunch of story elements are bouncing around, but it’s essentially based on an updated Faust legend.
Chris Hardwick, Bob Schreck, Grant Morrison Guillermo del Toro and Travis Beacham at the Legendary
The PACIFIC RIM GN will take place before the events of the movie, and reveal some of the training of the pilots in the film. He and Beckham both saw it as a logical extension of the story and a way to give more background. Asked about the transmedia elements, and whether that much-buzzed about concept can work, del Toro was emphatic that it can. “You need more time,” he said. “A feature film takes two years but that is not enough time to develop transmedia; a video game tales three or four years. It’s about world building. Transmedia is the future of storytelling.”
Film Director Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth, Pacific Rim) and comic creator Grant Morrison (Batman, X-Men) were on hand at Legendary Comics’ pre-New York Comic-Con media event to announce two all-new projects for the comics division of Legendary Entertainment. The announcements come on the heels of the launch of the first volume of The Tower Chronicles, Legendary’s first original IP release written by Matt Wagner and drawn by Simon Bisley.
With these two projects added to the slate, Legendary is poised for an impressive 2013 with projects also being released by Mark Waid, Max Brooks, and Shane Davis (Shadow Walk) and J. Michael Straczynski (The Majestic Files) as well as further releases from The Tower Chronicles.
Pacific Rim Graphic Novel
As fans continue to soak in all new details regarding Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures upcoming motion picture release Pacific Rim, del Toro used New York Comic-Con to announce the Pacific Rim graphic novel. A must-read for anyone who wants to see the movie, the graphic novel will serve as a prequel, providing important details on the characters and the lead up to the story arc of the movie. Written by the film’s writer Travis Beacham (Clash of the Titans), the graphic novel is written in three distinct parts – covering the in-world history from the first attack up to just before the movie,
Each part tells a complete episode of that history, dipping selectively in and out of character backstories and sometimes focusing on new characters who aren’t necessarily in the movie. The idea is to expand the universe and explore how this war has affected not only our heroes, but the world beyond the film. That said, Stacker Pentecost’s (Idris Elba) origin will figure into all three parts, tracking his journey to high-ranking commander.
Morrison brings to the pages a thrilling story starring wild-living screenwriter Ray Spass, who has one last chance to save his career as he struggles to write a new studio tent-pole movie, Annihilator.
The film centers around the incredible adventures of Max Nomax; a sci-fi rebel anti-hero who’s condemned to a haunted prison orbiting a supermassive black hole, following an epic struggle against the all-knowing, all–powerful artificial life form VADA and his squad of deadly Annihilators. Found guilty of the Greatest Crime in History, Nomax has vowed to clear his name by discovering a Cure for Death itself and resurrecting his lost love.
But with deadlines looming and a recently-diagnosed brain tumor, Spass is running out of time and inspiration – until the real Max Nomax mysteriously appears in the world of 21st century Los Angeles with no memory of how he got there, only a terrifying warning of imminent destruction and a mission for Ray Spass.
Ray’s tumor is the key—it contains all the information of Nomax’s adventures, uploaded into Ray’s head before Nomax made his great escape. Now, Ray has to finish his screenplay in order to get the information out of his head and shrink the tumor. Nomax needs Ray to finish the screenplay so he can remember how to defeat VADA and ultimately save the universe from extinction – if Makro, the unstoppable rogue Annihilator, doesn’t kill get to them first, that is.
But who or what is Max Nomax really? And why is it the more we learn, the less we want to know? A heart-stopping suspense thriller. A love story. An impossible mystery. A tale of vengeance and defiance – bargains and consequences – life and death – good and evil.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.