Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Stan Lee's new approach

If you set up your own production company, what would you call it? Whatever you come up with, you'd do well to beat Stan Lee, whose company is called Purveyors of Wonder, or POW! for short.

As an article in The Economist points out, Lee's Marvel Comics superheroes have dominated the box office in the past ten years or so but it's proving difficult for Lee or anyone else to create new characters with similar appeal.
Take Alan Moore, a revered writer of comic books. His works have inspired five ambitious films (the most recent is “Watchmen”), none of them hugely successful. And what goes for comic books also goes for television shows, computer games and other fodder for summer blockbusters. As audiences fragment, there is simply less mass content to throw into the Hollywood recycling machine.

It may be that a more modest approach works better. Next month another creation of Mr Lee’s will be unveiled at Comic-con, a huge San Diego convention that has become an important marketing platform for films. “Time Jumper”, an animated comic about a boy who can travel in time using his mobile phone, will be released in stages on the internet and mobile phones, free of charge. This is a relatively cheap way of testing an audience’s response to a new character. If it is hard to ram a new tale into public consciousness, it might just be possible to sneak it in.

1 comment:

  1. Paul Cheshire4:36 pm

    Alan Moore didn't write these films, he wrote comic books that were runined by Directors. This is widely known with Alan Moore stating he wants nothing to do with them, particularly the appaling Watchmen.

    I feel it unfair to compare Stan Lee's seeking out film deals with the work of Alan Moore, a man who has tackled many areas, including the superhero genre (watchmen 25 years ago)but has never sought to make a superhero film.



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