First Thor Photo

Here’s Aussie actor Chris Hemsworth (Kirk’s Dad in Star Trek) as Marvel’s god of thunder, Thor. Looks like a very faithful representation of his current costume. On a related note, if you’re watching Iron Man 2 this weekend, make sure you stay after the credits.

Jonah Hex Trailer

Opening on June 18 is this long in development film based on DC Comics’ Jonah Hex. It stars Josh Brolin as the titular scarred bounty hunter, Megan Fox with a Southern accent and John Malkovich as the baddie. Hex has had very little promotion and the trailer makes it seem like a bland revenge film rather than the great combination of the Western and horror genres that it purports to be.

Iron Man/Thor FCBD Preview

This Saturday is FCBD. Yep, Free Comic Book Day. It’s been growing for the last few years, with the majority of publishers putting out a sample of their wares. It’s a great opportunity for comic newbies to get an entry into the wonderful world of sequential art, and for fanboys and girls across the world to see what’s new, if your local shop is participating that is. Now, here’s a preview of Marvel’s FCBD offering, starring two of their new cinematic heroes.

Your First Look At Free Comic Book Day’s IRON MAN/THOR

Marvel is proud to unveil your first look at Iron Man/Thor, Marvel’s hotly anticipated Free Comic Book Day (May 1st) special from award-winning creators Matt Fraction and John Romita Jr. With the Heroic Age in full swing, Iron Man and Thor find themselves pitted against an enemy unlike any they’ve fought before! And, don’t forget, Iron Man/Thor is totally free this Saturday in celebration of Free Comic Book Dayat your local comic retailer!

“It’s exciting to see two of our most popular heroes paired with two of our top creators for Free Comic Book Day,” said David Gabriel, Senior Vice President of Sales & Circulation. “Marvel is proud to be part of this annual event– kudos to all the retailers who make this event happen year after year with outstanding success.”

Marvel encourages all comic book fans to check out the great offerings from all over the industry on Saturday, May 1st, as the historic Free Comic Book Day arrives at your local comic shop! For more information on FCBD, please visit www.freecomicbookday.com

FREE COMIC BOOK DAY 2010: IRON MAN/THOR

Written by MATT FRACTION

Penciled by JOHN ROMITA JR.

Cover by JOHN ROMITA JR.

RATED A…FREE!

IN STORES THIS SATURDAY!

Kick-Ass Review

I won’t necessarily say that I can’t see what all the fuss is about, because I can understand how seeing a pre-pubescent girl wielding a samurai sword, and a variety of guns while swearing can be jarring. However, I’ve read all the issues of the comic and it’s a lot more in your face on the page. What is sorely lacking from the transition to celluloid is the dark humour, and the likeable aspects of protagonist and titular vigilante Dave Lizewski.

It’s certainly a fanboy film, and comic creators Mark Millar and John Romita Jr, and film director Matthew Vaughan (Layer Cake) know their target audience well. From the Superman-like intro credits to the many scenes set in Atomic Comics, it is an experience for comic readers who can embrace the silly aspects of the superhero, with Nic Cage doing his best Adam West Batman impression, and Kick Ass hitting the streets in a green wetsuit. What is missing is the sense of fun, which does arrive too late at the film’s emotional and satisfying climax. Aaron Johnson is a fine actor, but he’s overshadowed in his own film, by baddie Mark Strong, Chloe Moretz as Hit Girl and Christopher Mintz-Plasse as the fumbling Red Mist. It’s not long into the film that Kick Ass deviates from the source material (particualarly in who dies and who lives) but with only 8 issues released in 2 years, the film makers had a lot of room to move.

It is an enjoyable film, but not as ‘out there’ as I expected. There’s no nudity or excessive swearing or intestine spilling. And that’s certainly a good thing. Any Tarantino film pushes the envelope more than this in respect to blood letting. Raising issues of family, friendship and standing up for your fellow man may get lost in all the gaudy costumes and gunplay, but don’t dismiss this film straight away. It’s not another great cross-over film with daring and artistic mass appeal like say, Sin City was, but at the same time, it does stand out more as a parody amongst the horde of comics films that have landed on cinema screens in the last few years and proves that even sequential art can be self referential rather than self reverential.

Batman: Under the Red Hood Trailer and Pics

They keep cranking them out, but they keep getting better. Thanks DC! Details below about July’s animated film based on the resurrection of Jason Todd, the second Robin.

GOTHAM CITY MEETS A NEW VIGILANTE WITH A MYSTERIOUS, VIOLENT TWIST IN

BATMAN: UNDER THE RED HOOD STELLAR VOICE CAST FEATURES BRUCE GREENWOOD, JENSEN ACKLES & NEIL PATRICK HARRIS IN

ALL-NEW DC UNIVERSE ANIMATED ORIGINAL MOVIE FROM WARNER HOME VIDEO ON JULY 27, 2010

SPECIAL EDITION BLU-RAY AND 2-DISC SPECIAL EDITION DVD INCLUDE DC SHOWCASE SHORT, JONAH HEX

Batman confronts new enemies, old foes and painful memories when a powerful vigilante with a penchant for violence comes to Gotham City in the intense graphic-novel-come-to-life Batman: Under the Red Hood, the next entry in the popular ongoing series of DC UNIVERSE Animated Original PG-13 Movies coming July 27, 2010 from Warner Premiere, DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. Animation. The full-length film will be distributed by Warner Home Video as a Special Edition version on Blu-Ray™ and 2 disc DVD for $29.99 (SRP) and $24.98 (SRP), respectively, as well as single disc DVD for $19.98 (SRP). The film will also be available On Demand and for Download.

The stellar voice cast has Bruce Greenwood (Captain Pike in the 2009 blockbuster Star Trek) donning the famed cowl as the voice of BatmanSupernatural star Jensen Ackles is Red Hood, and Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother) voices Nightwing. John DiMaggio (Futurama) and Jason Issacs (the Harry Potterfilms) round out the main cast as The Joker and Ra’s Al Ghul, respectively.

Batman: Under the Red Hood is scripted by award-winning comics writer Judd Winick and based on his popular 2005 comics storyline and subsequent comics graphic novel of the same name. Animation guru Bruce Timm returns as executive producer, as he has for all eight DC Universe animated original movies. Director is Brandon Vietti, who served as co-director of Superman Doomsday and was responsible for the first one-third of that film, including the fatal battle between the two title characters.

In Batman: Under the Red Hood, Batman faces his ultimate challenge as the mysterious Red Hood takes Gotham City by firestorm. One part vigilante, one part criminal kingpin, Red Hood begins cleaning up Gotham with the efficiency of Batman, but without following the same ethical code. Killing is an option. And when The Joker falls in the balance between the two, hard truths are revealed and old wounds are reopened.

Fans will be treated to an incredible package of DC Universe storytelling as the Special Edition Blu-Ray and 2-Disc Special Edition DVD include the second animated short in the all-new DC Showcase series – which features the popular DC Comics character, Jonah Hex. The short is scripted by renowned author Joe Lansdale and stars the voices of Thomas Jane (Hung), Linda Hamilton (The Terminator), Michelle Trachtenberg (Mercy, Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and Michael Rooker (Days of Thunder).

Batman: Under the Red Hood – 2 Disc Special Edition DVD will have more than two hours of fascinating bonus features, including:

  • Featurette – Robin’s Story – It was decided it was time to add a fresh face into the story mix, which turned out to be Dick Grayson, aka Robin. This is the story of Dick Grayson and how he transformed into Robin, with Batman as his father-figure role model.
  • Extended Sneak Peek at the next DC UNIVERSE Animated Original PG-13 Movie.
  • Widescreen (1.78:1)
  • Two title-themed episodes from of Warner Bros. Animation’s 20-year history of Batman television series, hand-picked by animation legend Bruce Timm.

Batman: Under the Red Hood Special Edition Blu-Ray will have more than three hours of bonus materials, including all the great extras from the 2-disc Special Edition DVD as well as:

  • Featurette: Death in the House of Batman – The story of how DC Comics heard the fans’ cry that the new Robin was not going to fit the cape, and how the Boy Wonder was scheduled to die.
  • Two additional bonus Batman-themed episodes personally selected by Bruce Timm
  • Digital copy

Batman: Under the Red Hood is another terrific entry in the groundbreaking series of DC Universe animated movies, a shining representation of the adult storytelling that comics-turned-to-film has to offer, and further evidence of the combined creative power within the collaboration of DC Entertainment, Warner Premiere, Warner Bros. Animation and Warner Home Video,” said Matt Bierman, Senior Vice President Production, Warner Premiere.

“Judd Winick’s and Doug Mahnke’s story of a Robin gone wrong introduced Batman’s most personal enemy to date.  It’s unbelievably cool to see it brought to life like this,” said Geoff Johns, Chief Creative Officer of DC Entertainment.

“With each exciting new chapter of the DC UNIVERSE films, fans have come to expect more – and Batman: Under the Red Hood delivers with an action-packed tale of mystery and emotional struggle brought to animated life by an outstanding filmmaking crew and voiced by the all-star talents of Bruce Greenwood, Jensen Ackles, Neil Patrick Harris and John Dimaggio,” said Amit Desai, WHV Vice President of Family, Animation & Partner Brand Marketing.

“In his feature length solo directorial debut, Brandon Vietti has brought this dark, psychological thriller to the screen with all the action and emotion of a great Batman story,” said Sam Register, Executive Vice President, Warner Bros. Animation.”

Shadowland Teaser

Poor Spidey. Marvel released this teaser image for a July launching mini-series, with the following info.

Shadowland: Battle For The Soul Of New York

SHADOWLAND #1 (of 5)

Written by ANDY DIGGLE

Penciled by BILLY TAN

Cover by JOHN CASSADAY

Wraparound Variant Cover by BILLY TAN

Rated T+ …$3.99

ON SALE JULY 2010

Free Mobile Comics Mag Debuts

This really is exciting, and now I get to share it. I’ve been writing for comics site Broken Frontier for a while now, and the last few months have seen it brought to another level (thanks to my fellow BFers who are  a lot more technically minded than me) and now we’ve just unleashed the FIRST free comics magazine for mobile devices. The press release is below, but fear not – if you’re like me and have yet to step into the iPad world, you can still grab the PDF from the Broken Frontier site.

On a related note, I recently interviewed writer extraordinaire Jonathan Hickman (The Nightly News, Fantastic Four, Shield) for the mag. It was my first ever phone interview and we talked for almost an hour. It was pretty awesome, I gotta say and he’s a very interesting guy. Well, my article stemming from that interview can now be read  in the digital pages of the brand new, first issue of The Frontiersman. Oh yeah.

Broken Frontier Launches The Frontiersman, the First Mobile Comics Magazine Free magazine debuts on iPad, goes weekly on May 4

Premier comic book news site Broken Frontier (www.brokenfrontier.com) proudly unveils The Frontiersman, the world’s first digital comics magazine for mobile devices. The magazine makes its debut on iPad with The Frontiersman #1, with new issues to be released weekly on Tuesdays as of May 4, 2010.

“We’re thrilled to offer comic fans a new way to experience the richness and diversity of the comics industry,” Broken Frontier’s Editor in Chief Frederik Hautain says. The Frontiersman will act as a digital companion to the main Broken Frontier website, where readers will still find their daily dose of comics news, reviews, blogging, previews and columns.

“BF isn’t going anywhere, on the contrary,” Hautain clarifies. “What we’re doing, is presenting our more in-depth articles and interviews in a format that allows you to enjoy them at your leisure without getting lost amid the boatloads of content that the web throws at you every day.”

The Frontiersman magazine app is available for free via iTunes. While the magazine can be optimally enjoyed on iPad, it can also be downloaded free of charge in PDF on the Broken Frontier website. The Frontiersman is developed in association withNetlash, the web development partner of Broken Frontier.

The first issue features interviews with Mark Millar and John Romita, Jr. on Kick-Ass, Paul Gravett on Tove Jansson’s Moominexhibition, and Jonathan Hickman on S.H.I.E.L.D., its history and political relevance. The Frontiersman #1 also dives into the storied history of The Green Hornet and spotlights this week’s top comics.

The Frontiersman, Exploring the Comics Universe. Go mobile and download The Frontiersman #1 right now on iTunes (http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/frontiersman/id368550228?mt=8) or as a PDF at www.brokenfrontier.com.