CANCER VIXEN is a very important graphic novel. When it came out in 2006, it earned what must have been the biggest advance ever for a graphic novel, $250,000. The book, by cartoonist Marisa Acocella Marchetto, was a witty and heartfelt account of the author’s diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer, and it did okay but it’s safe to say that was the last time an advance that big was ever given out for a graphic novel.

The movie was optioned for HBO with Cate Blanchett involved and it’s been hanging around there for a long time, with no movement,but now comes word that BEFORE MIDNIGHT’s Julie Delpy will script the vehicle, which is still set to star Blanchett.

Delpy is coming off acclaim for her performance opposite Ethan Hawke in the Richard Linklater-directed Before Midnight, and she wrote that script with her co-star and director. Her other co-writing credits include Before Sunset and 2 Days In New York. She and Blanchett turned in two of the most buzzed about actress performances of the year, counting Blanchett’s turn in Blue Jasmine.

The teleplay will focus on how Marchetto—who enjoyed an A-list life at the time of her diagnosis with an engagement to restaurateur Silvano Marchetto but still did not have health insurance—dealt with reconciling her somewhat transitory lifestyle with the deeper issues of life and death.

If this HBO movie ever gets made, it will definitely shift some more books.


  1. I loved CANCER VIXEN and included it in my 1000 COMIC BOOKS YOU MUST READ. I’m looking forward to the movie, which may be the first “comics” movie my Sainted Wife Barb will be willing to go to with me.

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