Oscar-winning special effects wizard Stan Winston [...] acknowledged having been an avid comic book fan since he was a kid. He recently drew the cover art for his new comic creation, "Stan Winston's Trakk," which follows the intergalactic adventures of an immortal monster hunter in 2099. Simon Bisley is another notable artist who drew another cover for "Trakk," which is written by Francis Takenaga and illustrated by Philip Tan.
Evolved from a movie idea he first conceived nearly 20 years ago that never came to fruition, Winston launched his new franchise as a four-issue series called "Mutant Earth" from Image Comics.
"Trakk" proved so popular that it is now its own stand-alone comic series, scheduled to retail in September, and Winston already is designing action figures with his Stan Winston Creatures company. In addition, Winston is negotiating with game publishers to bring "Trakk" to the interactive realm. He also is in talks with movie producers, hoping to bring "Trakk" to life as the big-budget Hollywood spectacle Winston originally envisioned.
"My real love is for fantastic characters surrounded by fantastic stories," Winston said. "The creative part of me has wanted to create characters no one has seen before and tell new stories. Comics are a wonderful way to introduce new stories to the same audience that loves movies and video games. And comics don't require the $100 million price tag of movies or two years' development time of video games."
The title character is a sword-wielding hunk of brawn whose primary foe is Vaquoul, a wily monster creator responsible for the werewolf, the vampire and other popular nightmares.
"Hollywood is always focused on ancillary rights to films, and I believe that a franchise can only succeed if each entity stands on its own," Winston said. "So 'Trakk' needs to be an excellent comic in its own right, which in turn can feed a video game, which has to be the best video game in that genre, which will feed a movie, which needs to be an excellent blockbuster. It doesn't matter whether the movie or comic or video game came first, as long as the stories and characters are compelling."
There's no set timetable for the comics to jump to video games or the big screen, Winston said, because he wants each genre to have ample time to develop its own audience.
"I'm as excited about the comics we're creating as I've been with any movie I've ever been involved with," he said.