Tell Em’ How You Feel

Popular graphic novels have been adapted to film for decades, and it makes a lot of sense.  When a story has been successful in one medium, why not put it to the test in others?  The very format of conventional graphic novels lends itself so beautifully to conceptualizing films.  It’s a script with pictures.  Shuffle some things around and you’ve got a story board!  Isn’t it great?

But of course, I’m simplifying.  Film adaptations of graphic novels involve making all kinds of creative and logistical decisions about how to make a story work in an entirely different medium from which it was originally imagined.  And depending on such decisions, many of these films have been wildly successful at the box office, and many have flopped.  Though, no matter the movie’s money making potential, it is always subject to scrutinization by fans of the original comic.

 

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For example: These movies may have made you excited, angry, happy, disappointed, indifferent, or something else entirely. And I’m sure you have your reasons.

 

There was a time when critical fans had no one to throw complaints or praise at except those within shouting distance.  But the internet has made it possible to hurl abuse at people on the other side of the planet.  In all seriousness though, there is an amazing amount of interaction between fans of any given graphic novel and it generates a ton of engaging criticism.  So, a person who decided to make one of these beloved comics into a movie can go on-line and find out exactly why some fans loved or hated their interpretation of it.

Some comic book fans are beginning to take things a step further by utilizing social networking sites.  It has become entirely possible to create a campaigns that aim to be part of the artistic decision making process before a movie adaptation project has even been put in motion.  While doing some research on the “Hack/Slash” series created by Tim Seeley, Stefano Caselli, and Sean Dove, I came across a few different blogs and news sources voicing their opinions about who should play the leading role of Cassie Hack in the film adaptation of the comic that is slated to be produced by Rogue Pictures.  According to google search the popular opinion would appear to be Ms. Allison Scagliotti (of “Warehouse 13”).

A relatively small, but dedicated online campaign, #AllisonScag4Cassie, has made its presence on facebook and twitter, and caught the attention of many online media forums.  By no means does any of this mean that the producer/director will have to take the fan input into consideration, but isn’t it cool that he could totally choose to?

The goal of the campaign is simply to get Scagliotti cast as Cassie Hack, thus avoiding the ever present possibility of having an actress cast in the role strictly based on their popularity or status as a sex symbol (Megan Fox is a name that has been repeatedly mentioned).  I myself am a fan of “Hack/Slash” and while I recognize that Cassie Hack has a sexually charged image, she is also a character with a lot of layers, and it just makes her more of a slasher hacking badass.  It would be beyond amazing to see a movie interpretation of the comic that captures those layers, instead of turning her into a one dimensional character.  I have high hopes for whoever lands the role.

  1 comment for “Tell Em’ How You Feel

  1. joshroberts
    February 21, 2013 at 8:45 pm

    I think you raise a pretty interesting point about random fans on the internet actually being able to make artistic decisions. Expanding technology has made a very important impact on art and has lead to its democratization. Technology is a doubled-edged sword that has unleashed unprecedented creativity and talent but has also enabled a lot of (no offense) regular people to become “artists.” It’s a problem that exists in almost every artistic medium. Personal computers have gotten powerful enough to give the average person music production tools that even the most established recording studios couldn’t dream of in the 60’s. Photos and paintings can be easily manipulated and shaped to perfection with relatively cheap programs that the average person can learn how to use. This opens up a lot of possibilities for art. In the right hands, this technology can be used to create amazing works of art cheaply, but more often than not, it’s just used by average people to create crap. The democratization of these technologies has destroyed the actual craft of creating art. Anyone can make art now and more importantly, everyone thinks they’re entitled to.

    The internet is similarly problematic when it comes to distributing art. Anyone can make art and share it with the world. Of course “anyone” includes talented artists who deserve to create works of art in the first place. It also includes everyone else. When everyone posts their creations online it creates a giant cloud of garbage that real, worthwhile art gets lost in. This cloud of information gets more and more dense every single day. I hate to say it, but I think that making art is supposed to be an elitist activity.

    For anyone who’s interested, this is a documentary that explores art and technology further. It’s really good and expands upon a lot of the ideas I talked about: http://vimeo.com/34608191

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