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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Madame Mirage, The Arcanum, The City of Ember, etc.

Every once in a while there’s a comic book coming out that I think people should be made aware of, so coming from Top Cow (Witchblade, Darkness, Wanted) this Wednesday, June 13 is the first issue of Madame Mirage written by Paul Dini and drawn by Kenneth Rocafort (Hunter-Killer). If you’ve never heard of Paul Dini, then I’m not sure what rock you’ve been living under. Mr. Dini started out as a producer/writer of several animated TV series including Batman, Superman, Batman Beyond, Justice League and Justice League Unlimited and has won five Emmys for his work. He’s also won a couple of Writer’s Guild Awards including one for the TV show Lost. Now Mr. Dini is making a name for himself in the world of comic books with DC’s Countdown, Detective and of course Madame Mirage

But who is this beautiful woman who appears out of the mist? As deadly as she is beautiful, she is cutting a bloody path through the city's villains, who now wear suits and have "legitimate" businesses. But who is her ultimate prey? And how does this Mirage take form? And why is her destiny and that of her sidekick Harper so irrevocably entwined? These and many other questions will be asked along with the most pivotal question of all – Who is Madame Mirage?

Personally, I can’t wait to pick this up. Between Paul Dini’s vaunted pedigree – has created the highly popular characters Jingle Belle and Harley Quinn among his many other accomplishments – and Kenneth Rocafort’s breathtaking artwork, Madame Mirage looks like a winner to me. Plus, isn’t that variant cover by Greg Horn (Marvel, EA Sports, General Motors) just gorgeous… For more information on Madame Mirage, be sure to check out the official trailer HERE and the Madame Mirage Myspace page.


Originally optioned in 1999 by Miramax, Gold Circle Films (Slither, White Noise) has recently picked up the rights to “The Arcanum” (2004), the debut novel by screenwriter Thomas Wheeler who also wrote the screenplay. At a glance the concept seems really intriguing – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Harry Houdini, H.P. Lovecraft and Marie Laveau are the Arcanum and must work together to solve a series of murders and deal with matters of the supernatural. Let’s just hope Hollywood does a much better job with this property than they did with the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, which had a similar premise…

Looks like “The Madman’s Tale” (2004) will be the latest John Katzenbach novel adapted into film following “In the Heat of the Summer”, “Just Cause” and “Hart’s War”. Producer Elliott Kastner (Where Eagles Dare) picked up the rights with Katzenbach scripting (his first time). The book sounds pretty cool – focuses on the hunt of a serial killer-rapist who has concealed himself among an insane asylum’s ward, with the story related in pencil by a madman – and I think it would make a great movie if done right. I’ll be keeping my eye on this one.

So here’s an interesting piece of news. Bill Murray of Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day and Lost In Translation fame will be starring in the film adaptation of Jeanne DuPrau’sThe City of Ember” (2003), a young adult fantasy novel. I’ve never heard of either the author or the books, but apparently it’s pretty popular and it sounds interesting: “The city of Ember was built as a last refuge for the human race. Two hundred years later, the great lamps that light the city are beginning to flicker. When Lina finds part of an ancient message, she’s sure it holds a secret that will save the city. She and her friend Doon must decipher the message before the lights go out on Ember forever! This stunning debut novel offers refreshingly clear writing and fascinating, original characters.” Three books have been released so far in the series with a fourth and final novel yet to be completed. Walden Media (Chronicles of Narnia, Bridge To Terabithia, The Dark Is Rising) is handling the adaptation with Gil Kenan (Monster House) directing and Tom Hanks’ Playtone (The Polar Express, My Big Fat Greek Wedding) producing.

In book news, Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist is hosting a giveaway for David Anthony Durham’sAcaciaHERE, so be sure to check that out. “Acacia” is definitely one of my top fantasy reads of 2007 and since it comes out TODAY, I urge you to go out and pick up a copy. Other books seeing release today include Peter David’sDarkness of the Light”, Jay Lake’sMainspring” and Tobias S. Buckell’sRagamuffin”, all courtesy of Tor-Forge. So, if you’re in the mood for some new reading that should keep you busy for a bit :)


Reanimated said...

Hi Robert.

I picked up Acacia yesterday based on your wonderful review of the book. I hope I like (got a few things to rip through first).

Your blog is quickly becoming the first thing I check out when I log on (easily on par with Pat's). Hope it's getting the attention it deserves. Keep up the awesome work!


Robert said...

Thanks so much for the compliments! I'm not sure if I'm on the same level as Pat's, but that would be exalted company to be in :) It feels great to be appreciated and I'm glad you picked up Acacia. Definitely let me know what you thought of the book once you get a chance to finish it. Thanks again and much love & respect...

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