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NEWS ARCHIVE

July 2002

PR: Carpenter's Snake Plissken comes to comics
Posted Wednesday, July 31, 2002, 6:25AM CDT by Franklin Harris
PRESS RELEASE: STUDIO CITY, CA -- July 28, 2002 -- Hurricane Entertainment has partnered with the legendary talents of Director John Carpenter, Producer Debra Hill and Actor Kurt Russell to produce a new comic book series based on the continuing adventures of their infamous anti-hero SNAKE PLISSKEN. Plissken is the lead character of the 1981 classic science fiction film ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK.

The series, entitled JOHN CARPENTER'S SNAKE PLISSKEN CHRONICLES, will premiere in the Spring of 2003. Tone Rodriguez, penciller on the breakout comic VIOLENT MESSIAHS, from Image Comics, will draw the series in his trademark hyper-realistic, gritty style. When asked about what he thought of Tone's sketches Carpenter responded "They?re great. We?ve got a great artist here. I grew up with comic books, going way back, and I was always interested in the art. So I?m very delighted, very delighted."

Hurricane Partner William O'Neill will write "Snake". William is best known as the co-creator of the hit series VIOLENT MESSIAHS and the fan favorite CHASSIS, a recent Wizard Magazine treasure chest pick. Jan Utstein-O'Neill, CEO of Hurricane, which produces the aforementioned comics, adds, "We are very excited at the potential of this project and the chance to work with such esteemed talent as John, Debra and Kurt. It's not often that you get the opportunity to take such a well known and an iconic figure as Snake and explore new adventures along with his Creators."

The comic series, which begins "Early the next day..." continues the first story of Snake Plissken a once respected, highly decorated "Defender of the American Dream" who encountered a nightmare, the likes of which no one could ever image, or experience. What emerged is a man who is not a loner, but one who realizes that we are all, in fact, alone?and he is completely comfortable in this knowledge. Snake is a cool, dark and dangerous escape "Artist" - who always gets the last laugh, because he ultimately knows that the joke is on himself.

This comic book is only one part of a much larger launch that will be revealed in the coming months. The deal was brokered and packaged by Kevin Cleary and Josh Morris of ACME Talent and Literary in Los Angeles. According to Debra Hill "Our goal is to brand SNAKE PLISSKEN like other movie or comic book icons such as Spider-Man, Batman and Superman starting with the new Comic from Hurricane. In addition to the comic, 2003 and 2004 will see a release of novels, a Japanese Anime feature and a video game. A new DVD collection of ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK will be coming out next spring from MGM. It will feature missing footage, lots of new commentary and interviews from the original "Escapees" as well as some surprises that will make Snake fans very happy."

The first step in this launch is a "Sneak Preview" book. This book, filled with Tone's gripping art and an exclusive interview with John Carpenter, will be available for the first time at the San Diego Comic Con. The San Diego Comic Con will be held at the San Diego Convention Center, August 1-4th and is the largest comic book related event in North America. Debra Hill, who's Writing and Producing credits also include the HALLOWEEN films, THE FOG and THE FISHER KING will be signing copies, along with Tone and William, on Friday, August 2nd at the Hurricane booth, # 1235c, come by the booth to check for exact times.

Gaiman announces 'Coraline' movie
Posted Wednesday, July 24, 2002, 5:24AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Neil Gaiman announced on his Web site that a live-action movie based on his new children's book, "Coraline," is in the works: "The official press release about the Coraline movie should be going out in the next day or so, telling the world that Henry 'Nightmare Before Christmas' Selick will be directing it (and wrote the script), for Bill Mechanic's Pandemonium films, to be distributed by Disney, and starring Michelle Pfeiffer as the mother and the other mother, and that it will start shooting in early 2003 for a late 2003 release."

Leo McKern dies at 82
Posted Tuesday, July 23, 2002, 9:37AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Actor Leo McKern, who appeared in "The Omen" and was one of the many No. 2s on "The Prisoner," has died at the age of 82, according to a report at Dark Horizons.

'Dead Zone' gets second season
Posted Tuesday, July 23, 2002, 5:36AM CDT by Franklin Harris
USA Network's surprise hit series "Dead Zone," based on the Stephen King novel, has been renewed for a second season, according to Variety.

Mia Sara joins 'Birds of Prey' TV
Posted Sunday, July 21, 2002, 8:43AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Mia Sara ("Legend," "Timecop") has joined the cast of the WB's new series, "Birds of Prey." She is replacing Sherilyn Fenn in the role of Dr. Harleen Quinzel/Harley Quinn. (Fenn dropped out after the show's producers decided to expand her character's role.) "Birds of Prey" is based on the DC Comics book of the same name.

Source: Toon Zone

Frakes to direct live-action 'Thunderbirds'
Posted Friday, July 19, 2002, 12:12PM CDT by Franklin Harris
According to Variety, Jonathan Frakes (Cmdr. Riker on "Star Trek: The Next Generation") will direct a live-action version of "Thunderbirds," based on Gerry Anderson's "supermarionation" TV series. Production on the Universal Studios film should begin early next year.

DreamWorks picks up 'Millennium Actress'
Posted Wednesday, July 17, 2002, 6:30AM CDT by Franklin Harris
DreamWorks has purchased the worldwide (except Asia) distribution rights to the anime film "Millennium Actress," directed by Satoshi Kon ("Perfect Blue"), according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Ang Lee will direct 'Crouching Tiger' prequel
Posted Wednesday, July 17, 2002, 6:22AM CDT by Franklin Harris
According to the China Post, Ang Lee will direct a prequel to his acclaimed film "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" next year, after his work on "The Hulk" is complete. Lee plans for Jet Li to take over the role of Li Mubai, played by Chow Yun Fat in the first film.

Raimi to produce another comic-book film
Posted Wednesday, July 17, 2002, 6:13AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Sam Raimi ("Spider-Man") will produce, but not direct, "30 Days Of Night," based on the three-issue comic-book miniseries of the same name. The movie is about a small town near the Arctic Circle that falls under attack by vampires. This is a really bad thing for the town, as nights that far north are a month long, hence the title.

Source: ICv2.com

'Alien vs. Predator' movie has writer/director
Posted Wednesday, July 17, 2002, 6:06AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Variety reports that another long-in-development movie is finally going forward. Paul Anderson ("Resident Evil") will write and direct "Alien vs. Predator" for 20th Century Fox.

'Spider-Man' comes home Nov. 1
Posted Monday, July 15, 2002, 6:31AM CDT by Franklin Harris
The two-disc "Spider-Man" DVD hits stores on Nov. 1. The extras will include: costume and make-up tests with Tobey Maguire, interviews with director Sam Raimi, Stan Lee and "an extensive history of Marvel's superhero character."

Source: Cinescape

USA plans new 'Night Gallery'
Posted Thursday, July 11, 2002, 5:44AM CDT by Franklin Harris
The USA Network is reviving the Rod Serling television series "Night Gallery." The stories for the anthology series will include both new material and remakes of stories from the original "Night Gallery."

Source: The Sci-Fi Wire

Sci-Fi Channel developing new 'Quantum Leap,' 'Tremors'
Posted Thursday, July 11, 2002, 5:38AM CDT by Franklin Harris
The Sci-Fi channel is developing a two-hour TV movie based on "Quantum Leap." If successful, the movie could lead to a new "Quantum Leap" TV series.

Also, Sci-Fi is developing a TV series based on the "Tremors" movie series.

Source: The Sci-Fi Wire

'Batman vs. Superman' gets a director and a go
Posted Tuesday, July 9, 2002, 6:38AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Wolfgang Petersen has officially signed to direct "Batman vs. Superman," a live-action feature pitting the world's two best-known superheroes against each other. Warner Bros. has greenlit the movie and plans to release it in 2004.

Meanwhile, Darren Aronofsky?s "Batman: Year One" and McG's "Superman" project continue to move forward slowly.

Sources: Variety and Cinescape

'Transformers' movie on the way?
Posted Tuesday, July 9, 2002, 6:28AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Hasbro has confirmed that an undisclosed party has purchased the feature-film rights to "The Transformers." But the toy company did not say if the film would be animation or live-action.

Source: Coming Attractions

Farrell joins 'S.W.A.T.' cast
Posted Tuesday, July 9, 2002, 6:21AM CDT by Franklin Harris
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Colin Farrell has signed to star opposite Samuel L. Jackson in the movie version of "S.W.A.T.," based on the '70s TV series.

New 'Swamp Thing' movie in works
Posted Tuesday, July 9, 2002, 5:46AM CDT by Franklin Harris
Len Wein, who created Swamp Thing for DC Comics, is working on a script for a third "Swamp Thing" movie. Unlike the two previous films, however, this one will remain faithful to tone of the comics. (Unfortunately, the project is at Joel Silver's Silver Pictures, and Silver has demonstrated a talent for ruining comic-book properties.)

Source: Comics2Film

Head not up for 'Doctor Who'
Posted Wednesday, July 3, 2002, 9:55AM CDT by Franklin Harris
What did I tell you about "Doctor Who" revival stories? Well, the latest story, that Anthony Head ("Buffy the Vampire Slayer") would play the Doctor in a BBC revival of the beloved sci-fi series, turned out to be just another ill-founded rumor.

Source: Dark Horizons

PR: ADV Films to publish Newtype mag in U.S.
Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2002, 6:40PM CDT by Franklin Harris
PRESS RELEASE: HOUSTON, July 2, 2002 ? A.D. Vision, Inc. (?ADV?), the #1 producer-distributor of Japanese animation in North America, is proud to announce the signing of a long term agreement with top Japanese publisher and multimedia company Kadokawa Shoten, LTD. to localize, publish and distribute an English language version of Japan's premiere anime magazine, Newtype, on an exclusive basis throughout America and the English speaking world.

Newtype USA will make its anticipated debut with a special collector?s edition ?Convention Teaser? at July?s Anime Expo convention in Long Beach, California and the San Diego Comic-Con International in August. The first newsstand edition of Newtype USA will go on sale this fall, and will be available through subscription and at specialty stores across the nation.

?We?re absolutely thrilled to have the opportunity to bring Newtype to America,? ADV President and CEO John Ledford said. ?It?s a tremendous magazine, and something we?ve needed here for a long time. American fans have been clamoring for years to get a magazine that offered a comprehensive look at the world of anime, up close and in depth. What better way to give them what they want than by bringing over Japan?s authority on the subject? This is going to rock the anime industry to its very foundation.?

Newtype has a monthly circulation of over 300,000 in Japan. ADV?s marketing push for the magazine will reach potential subscribers through the upcoming Newtype website (www.newtype-usa.com), through ADV?s massive customer database and through subscription cards inserted into the company?s DVD titles. ADV forecasts over 1,000,000 new readers within the first two years of publishing.

With its comprehensive coverage and stylistic portrayal of the anime industry, the Newtype brand appeals both to the established fan base and to new initiates to the genre, and has played a tremendous part in the success of many top anime properties over its publishing history. Exposure from Newtype?s regular manga reprints, a tradition that will be carried on in Newtype USA, has also turned many manga titles into successful entertainment franchises.

Newtype USA will be unlike any other anime magazine available today, in that it will be published in the Japanese right-to-left format, instead of the traditional English-language left-to-right format.

?We thought we could really enhance the reading experience by having Newtype USA mirror its counterpart?s format,? Ledford said. ?I think it will be a really unique, fun thing that the fans will enjoy.?

The Convention Teaser features a cover story on Japan?s hottest television anime series, ?RahXephon,? spotlights on popular new American anime imports, feature stories on Japanese culture, behind the scenes interviews with creative talent, the English language premiere of the Full Metal Panic manga, and much more.

'Freddy vs. Jason' to film this year
Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2002, 1:05PM CDT by Franklin Harris
Cinescape confirms reports that the long-awaited (long-dreaded?) horror team-up "Freddy vs. Jason" will go before the cameras later this year.

Head to star in new 'Doctor Who' series?
Posted Tuesday, July 2, 2002, 10:07AM CDT by Franklin Harris
PeopleNews reports that Anthony Head ("Buffy the Vampire Slayer") is the frontrunner for the role of the time-travelling Time Lord in a new "Doctor Who" series to air on the BBC next year.

Standard disclaimer: All "Doctor Who" news is to be treated as rumor until you see the finished product on television.



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