Writer of Cold Blooded Chillers
Published by: Studio 407
Interviewed by: Richard Vasseur - (Posted: 12/14/2008)
Richard: How did "Cold Blooded Chillers" come to be created?
Bob: About 3/4 of the way through THE NIGHT PROJECTIONIST (a vampire horror series I created for Studio 407), I decided to dust off some film script shorts that had fared well in screenwriting contests but never got made. Actually, one of these did get made into a film -- THE WAITING ROOM which appears in issue one was optioned and, after some pretty big edits, was released as a short film starring Richard Schiff and Izabella Miko by co-writer/director Lisa Demaine. The movie version is called WAITING. I'd always wanted to see my original version "produced" and figured that creating a comic book would give me full creative control and enable me to work within a tight budget. In fact, I've found you can create 3 oversized comic books ( @ 36-40 pages per issue) covering 10 stories for $8-10K -- about what it would cost to do one film short with a good cast and crew.
Richard: What is the storyline in "Cold Blooded Chillers"?
Bob: "COLD BLOODED CHILLERS: Tales of suburban murder and malice" is an anthology of dark, disturbing tales where Mankind is the worst monster of our nightmares. The collection of stories depicts any and every kind of depravity we as humans subject other humans to. Not surprisingly, it's been a tough sell in my family where my wife and her siblings lean toward romantic comedies and TV mush like The Gilmore Girls.
Richard: What type of person will enjoy this comic?
Bob: The type of person who gets a rush out of being disturbed -- not necessarily grossed out, but psychologically twisted. And also people who enjoy a creepy, eclectic blend of different art styles.
Richard: Who are some of the main characters we will be seeing?
Bob: Serial killers, depraved loners, the "Psychopath Next Door" ... you know, the type of people you see at Church on Sunday (I'm not kidding here). Each story is different, so the cast of characters are always changing. And who the "bad guy" is in each story is usually a surprise or "Gotcha!" moment.
Richard: Who are some of the artists on this series?
Bob: A real talented assortment of experienced comic book illustrators and fresh emerging horror talent from places like the US, UK, Finland, Philippines, Poland and Portugal. This includes a few action hero artists who want to take a break from drawing people in tights and explore their dark side. Artists include: Mark Chilcott, Zeu, Preston Asevedo, Reno Maniquis, Adam Swiecki, Dirk Shearer, Monty Borror, Jay Fife, Scott Austin, Neil Morrissey, and Alain Norte. You can check out their art galleries on comicspace.com.
Richard: Why can human beings be as scary as make believe monsters?
Bob: Because they are more evil and have a bigger, more demented brain.
Richard: How is screenwriting different than comic book writing?
Bob: In screenwriting, you leave a lot of the visual description to the discretion of the director. You can certainly describe characters and setting, but if you try to get too detailed or describe camera angles -- well, that's a big no-no in Hollywood and you're branded as a neophyte. With comics, the more detail the better. You need to describe how many panels are on a page, what the explicit action is per panel, and you are encouraged to provide reference photos to show what the character looks like or, for example, if its a different time or dimension, what type of clothing the characters are wearing.
Richard: How did "The Night Projectionist" change from a horror script into a comic book series and graphic novel?
Bob: The Night Projectionist was a rough horror script but I actually pitched it as a treatment to Studio 407. Alex Leung, the Principal at Studio 407, was very receptive because the story was a different take on an overly done horror subgenre -- vampire tales. The story has changed quite a bit from that first treatment I pitched, I can tell you that! For all you wannabe screenwriters who are thinking of turning to comics -- Beware! There is a development hell in comic books too (but in the end, it is IMMENSELY satisfying and worth the trip).
Richard: What can people expect from this comic?
Bob: From COLD BLOODED CHILLERS, expect the unexpected. I'll do at least 3 issues and an anthology. If sales spike, I'll continue to crank out over-sized comics at a cheap price and I'll continue to get better with my story-telling and artist collaborations.
From THE NIGHT PROJECTIONIST, be ready for a compelling, original story that combines two storylines -- the backstory from the 1700s that tells the vampire mythology, and a rip-snorting suspense tale that takes place in a movie theater on Halloween eve in the modern day. And be ready to buy issue one at your local comic shop or bookstore in February '09 with issues 2, 3 and 4 released bi-monthly thereafter. A graphic novel will be released sometime in Spring 2010.
Richard: What future projects do you have planned?
Bob: Issue 3 (the Supernatural issue) of COLD BLOODED CHILLERS will be available online in January '09. Also coming out is an anthology book called "BONE CHILLER: 8 Great Scares" which is a "best-of" the series to-date with two cool extras tossed into the mix. And, hopefully, I will have 1-2 movies produced in 2009 and will dabble in a webisode as well.
Richard: What do you do with your free time?
Bob: What free time?
Richard: Which comics did you read as a child and do you read now?
Bob: Tales of the Crypt and Creepy. As for now, mostly indie comics that are horror noir.
Richard: How can someone contact you?
Bob: Visit my website at www.coldbloodedchillers.com .
Richard: Any words for fans of your work?
Bob: Thanks for your support, and tell your friends to check out COLD BLOODED CHILLERS on IndyPlanet, Comixpress and the official website at www.coldbloodedchillers.com. And stay tuned for THE NIGHT PROJECTIONIST to be released in February '09 (visit www.studio-407.com for updates). And one more thing -- I am also proud to be part of Studio 407's first creature teaser trilogy called SHADOW CHRONICLES which previews three new horror stories Studio 407 is releasing in early 2009. It's sure to be a collector's issue -- aside from myself, one of the writers is Neal Marshal Stevens (the screenwriter of Thir13en Ghosts) and the other writer is my editor, Chad Jones.