Grant Morrison Interview

Comics Alliance has a pretty revealing interview with writer Grant Morrison about his work on Batman Incorporated, films and his upcoming work on the rebooted Action Comics, in which we’ll see a new, inexperienced Superman.

With Action Comics, we’re certainly dealing with a Superman that doesn’t have his parents anymore. Both Ma and Pa Kent are dead in this version, and it’s kind of like the original Superman where you saw him standing over their graves in the same way that Batman did and vowing to always fight for the right. He’s kind of a lot more isolated in that sense, even though he’s not a brooding or inward-turning character like Batman is.

Catch the whole interview here.

Watch Moore and Morrison Docos for Free

If you’re in the U.S that is. Last year’s doco, Talking With Gods on writer Grant Morrison can be seen here and 2002’s The Mindscape of Alan Moore can be seen here.

I’ve only seen the Morrison one, and it’s pretty good.

Talking With Gods in Melbourne

At the Australian Centre for the Moving Image at Federation Square in Melbourne you can see the new doco about comics writer Grant Morrison. It will be shown on Friday January 28 at 6:45 pm and tickets will be available soon.

The trailer is below and here’s the official site for Talking With Gods.

Talking With Gods Review

This is something I’ve been meaning to review for a while. We talked about it on our Extra Sequential podcast a few weeks ago, in episode 15, but I thought it might be worth an extra mention  as we come close to Christmas, as it is a great present for the fanboy or girl in your life. For comics newbies, it’s not that acceessible. That is to say, if you don’t know who Grant Morrison is, then this won’t convince you of his awesomeness. Produced by the fine folks at SequArt, who are known for their insightful literary criticism of comics, this 80 minute documentary did surprise me in at least 2 ways. Firstly, I was sure they’d need to put subtitles on the film as every other time I’ve seen Morrison talk in his thick Scottish accent it was barely decipherable. Maybe he’s softened now that he’s spending more time in America, but it was fine and his casual revelations were easy and entertaining to take in. Secondly, he’s not as weird as I thought. He’s one of those creators, like Alan Moore, whose work is often examined and criticized, because we expect so much of him. Like Moore, he shares an interest in magic, but Morrison seems more public and approachable. When he discusses his dealings with the subject thanks to an influential uncle it just seems matter-of-fact. He also talks about his drug use (but no cocaine) and the strange visions that he experienced, and usually worked into his scripts on Vertigo series The Invisibles.

Of course, there’s many interviews with his fellow creators who aren’t shy on praise, including Frank Quitely, Phil Jimenez, Dan DiDio and many more. Though they’re not always revealing, they at least show Morrison’s down to earth nature and reinforce the fact that he is loved by critics, fans and fellow professionals.

It’s only $34 at Amazon bundled with the unsuprisingly more slick Secret Origin doco on DC Comics, which make perfect companion pieces, especially as most of Morrison’s work has been with DC in the last 20 years. It was Morison’s dynamite run on JLA for DC in the ’90s that cemented my love of comics and from that to WE3 to Seaguy to All Star Superman to a stint on X-Men for Marvel he’s shown that he’s a capable scribe of big ideas.

Talking about his upbringing, his love life, his artistic skills and the respect he has for the storytelling power of superheroes is all fascinating stuff. Unfortunately there are no interviews with loved ones, but the man himself is revealing and honest enough to paint a real self-portrait.

Director Patrick Meaney does a grand job of keeping it visually interesting and although it can divulge into a series of talking heads at times, generous use of the man’s comics work, and convention footage, make sure the visuals stay as interesting as the subject himself. The back cover of the DVD states that it contains, “mind bombs, psychedlic ideas and transgressive concepts,” which sums up Morrison’s work aptly. Of all the possible creators the film makers could have chosen Morrison is in the top 5 most obvious ones for he’s led an interesting and highly creative life. Their next film is on writer Warren Ellis and although I’m less familiar with his work, I’ll be sure to grab it too.

On a related note if you like behind the scenes on creative types, Chronicle Books is releasing Art Work in April which has looks at the notepads and journals from creators from many fields, such as Wes Anderson and Will Self.

Patrick Meaney Interview

My interview with Patrick Meaney is now up at Broken Frontier. Meaney is the director of the upcoming documentary focused on Scottish comics writer Grant Morrison. Entitled Talking With Gods the film is out on October 25. For comics fans, this will certainly be a good film to watch.

Grant Morrison Doco Out on October 25

The documentary on writer Grant Morrison (who relaunched JLA, killed Batman, rejuvenated X-Men and much more) is now available for pre-order at Amazon. This should be one interesting film. The cover below is not the final version, but here’s the official lowdown.

Sequart Research & Literacy Organization (producer) is proud to announce that its first documentary, Grant Morrison: Talking with Gods, is now available for pre-order on Amazon (Region 1 DVD).
Talking with Gods examines Morrison’s 30-year career and the real-life events that inspired his stories. Featuring extensive interviews with Morrison himself, the film delves into his early days growing up in Scotland, the start of his career in comics, the crazy years of the ’90s as his life and his comics became enmeshed, and his recent attempts to turn social darkness and personal troubles into compelling comics. The film also gives insight into his creative process, including a look into his vaunted idea notebooks. Complementing Morrison’s own words are interviews with many of his collaborators and colleagues, including Frank Quitely, Warren Ellis, Geoff Johns, Phil Jimenez, Mark Waid, Cameron Stewart, Douglas Rushkoff, Frazer Irving, Jill Thompson, Dan DiDio, and more.

Re-designing Batman and Robin

Over at The Source, DC’s official blog, are the latest two posts from Grant Morrison describing his inspirations and motivations for the new Batman and Robin series, with assorted art from Frank Quitely’s sketchbooks. I love all this behind the scenes stuff, and here you’ll see preliminary sketches of new enemies, the flying Batmobile, Damian Wayne as Robin and Dick Grayson as Batman (which is also covered by Alex Ross in his Rough Justice book). Some of the scribe’s inspirations are as wild as to be expected. Who else would take My Fair Lady as such a firm starting point?