Movies you didn’t know were based on comic books.
Bruce Willis’ latest, RED 2, has just been released in Australia. The original RED – a tale about a team of former Black Ops, now in middle age and finding themselves under attack – was based, in part, on the comic book series of the same name written by Warren Ellis. Monster Pictures decided to flick through our comic collection to see what other films you didn’t realize were based on comics.
You could be forgiven for not knowing that David Cronenbourg’s crime thriller was based on a comic book as it only loosely follows the story of John Wagner’s novel. Screenwriter Josh Olsen electing to use the graphic novel as a stepping-stone to explore the themes that interested him. Changing whole characters, removing subplots and even the ending, the film went on to win numerous awards and was even nominated for an Academy Award.
Before vampires were known for glittering, Josh Harnett starred in this horror about an Alaskan town coming under attack from vampires during a month of polar nights. Based on a 2002 mini series that has spawned numerous sequels, 30 Days of Nights was originally pitched by author Steve Niles as a film after failing to gather interest in the comic. The comic was finally picked up where, ironically, filmmakers came knocking at his door to get the rights!
Hey, remember that bit in The Mask when Jim Carrey is surrounded by the police and kills them all? Well, no you won’t do because that was from the distinctly un-child friendly Dark Horse comic books on which the blockbuster movie was based. Aiming to get the families in, New Line decided to forgo the blood and guts of the first couple of volumes. As the film’s popularity grew with toys and a cartoon series, the comic, too, began to appeal to everyone. Spoilsports!
Sticking to the theme of appealing to the masses, 1997’s Men In Black – which gave us that bloody single – is actually based on the adult mini series The Men In Black by Lowell Cunningham. Instead of being the discreet jovial protectors of Earth as Will Smith would have us believe, the MIB is really an organization that seeks to manipulate the world in their own image. Agents are requested to use any means to complete their missions, including executing witnesses. The comics are pretty rare now, with one issue presently going for over $100 on eBay.
Tom ‘The ‘Burbs’ Hanks got himself some five o’clock shadow and went all moody as a mob enforcer protecting his son from a psychotic pre-Bond Daniel Craig. Based on the graphic novel by Max Allan Collins, the screenplay boiled the story down to its essence and added a new character for Jude Law. Serving as a consultant, Collins was said to be happy with the final product but was opposed to the amount of swearing that appeared in the film.