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Old 04-21-2010, 03:55 AM   #1
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Default Paul Pope's Battling Boy

From variety: Paramount gets behind 'Battling Boy'
Originally Posted by TATIANA SIEGEL
Paramount Pictures has acquired Paul Pope's upcoming graphic novel "Battling Boy," with Brad Pitt's Plan B shingle to produce the adaptation.
Gritty tale centers on the son of a god or superhero who comes down from the top of a mountain at his father's behest in order to rid a giant city of monsters.

Book will be published in spring 2010 by First Second Books.

Pope, a multiple Eisner Award winner who writes and illustrates his work, is best known for his "Heavy Liquid" and "Batman: Year 100" comicbook series. He worked for years at Kodansha, Japan's best-known manga publisher.

Par-based Plan B is developing a number of high-profile comicbook-based projects, including "Black Hole" and "World War Z."

Studio is looking to attach a writer to adapt "Battling Boy."

Plan B's Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner will serve in some producing capacity.
Originally Posted by Paul Pope
In Batman Year 100, I had room for a couple of long fight sequences, but I felt cramped even with 200 pages. This fight scene from BATTLING BOY alone is about 50 pages. It's liberating to have no page restrictions. I wish Kirby could've had 50 pages for one fight scene, imagine what he would've done.

The extended cinematic sequence is one of the best gifts we've inherited from manga.
From THR: 'Watchmen' scribe taking on 'Battling Boy'
Originally Posted by Jay A. Fernandez
Alex Tse has been hired to tackle the adaptation of "Battling Boy" for Plan B and Paramount Pictures.

Brad Pitt's production company picked up rights to the forthcoming graphic novel written and illustrated by Paul Pope in November. The story line follows the son of a god who comes down from the top of a mountain at his father's urging to rid the giant, continent-sized city of Monstropolis of a plague of beasts.

First Second Books will publish the comic in the spring. Paramount execs Eben Davidson and Andrew Calof are overseeing Tse's adaptation for the studio.

Tse, who is repped by CAA and Brillstein Entertainment, co-wrote the recent adaptation of "Watchmen," which Paramount distributed internationally. The film has grossed $177 million worldwide.

He also has two projects at Warner Bros. -- a live-action adaptation of "Ninja Scroll" in development with Appian Way and "The Illustrated Man," an adaptation of Ray Bradbury stories, in development for director Zach Snyder. Tse is also working on the screenplay for "Frankie Machine," which Michael Mann will direct for Paramount.

Plan B's overall deal with Paramount includes the in-progress adaptations of "Eat, Pray, Love," with Ryan Murphy directing; graphic novels "The Killer" and "Black Hole," both David Fincher projects; and the zombie-apocalypse thriller "World War Z," which Marc Forster will direct.
From CBR:
What are you excited about for 2010? Part 1
Originally Posted by Paul Pope
First of all, I am excited about turning in Battling Boy, my next major graphic novel, to be published in 2011 by First Second Books. Battling Boy has been years in the works. I have a lot of faith in this project. There is a bunch of stuff related to the potential film which I would like to discuss--but can't as of now. Same goes for the book. I have spent most of 2009 engaged in the film and book productions of this story. But the book is coming regardless of whether or not a film is made, and I am putting a lot of love into it. I hope the readers really get into it.
Mike Russell Delivers A Must-Read Interview With Paul Pope! BATTLING BOY, BATMAN: YEAR 100 And Much More Discussed!


RUSSELL: You're still working on "Battling Boy," correct?

POPE: Oh, yeah. I've got a ways to go on "Battling Boy." At least a year.

RUSSELL: Are you still planning on doing that as two volumes, about 400 pages total?

POPE: Yeah, two books -- Part 1 and Part 2. It's different from how the film breaks down; the film has a three-act structure.

RUSSELL: You've said you're throwing three-act structure out the window on this and drawing 40-page fight scenes.

POPE: Yeah. There are a few of them. They go on forever. That's from manga. One of my favorite books is Egawa Tatsuya's "Tokyo University Story" -- and he would have long sequences where basically nothing would be happening except a guy in a bicycle riding along, or two guys playing Ping-Pong. And that's just so cool to me -- not because it's jerking off on paper, but because it feels real. It's that fugue state you get into when you're doing something -- when you're playing chess or drinking coffee in the morning trying to wake up.... To me, the magic of comics -- and art -- is trying to say something real about life in an artificial medium. To re-create life, or to sub-create it, to use Tolkien's term.

I don't think much of Egawa's stuff has appeared in English, really. He's like the Frank Miller of Japan. He's huge. You'd be over there watching some game show and he'd be a guest contestant. But the subject matter is a bit Japanese-centric -- young people falling in and out of love at Tokyo University might not be the most mainstream story for the West. [laughs]
RUSSELL: "Battling Boy" was optioned by Plan B, Brad Pitt's production company. How was the collaboration with screenwriter Alex Tse on that adaptation? Was it weird to be working with him on the adaptation of your comic when you aren't actually finished drawing the book?

POPE: It was pretty neat. He was able to come and stay here last summer. We'd meet up and have dinner and he'd come over to my place and work for a while.

I feel very excited for Millar and Romita Jr. on "Kick-Ass." I'm really happy for them. There aren't many models we can look at for "Battling Boy." There was a moment working with Alex last summer where we'd gone through numerous scripts -- and we've got more to go -- and I felt weird. I wrote this big treatment for the story, which is the basis for both the graphic novel and the film. And it's like a novella -- 50 pages, and it's got dialogue, but it's not a script; it's an extremely detailed story breakdown. And Alex said, "I'm adapting your story for film. I'm not doing anything new to this -- I'm making sense of it for Hollywood." And that made me feel much better.

But the thing's so protean -- we're not exactly sure what the final version's gonna look like at this point. But we're movin' along. Did you ever read Bob Balaban's book about the making of "Close Encounters"?

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