Francis Manapul: comic artist, TV host and ‘Beast Seeker’!
Canadian comics fans with at least a passing interest in cryptozoology may want to tune into History Television on Wednesday night for the premiere of Beast Legends, a six-part series that examines “the truth about mythological creatures that could be real … and historical creatures that could be myths.” The kraken, the griffin, a bird monster — that sort of thing.
For that daunting mission, the producers assembled “a learned kind of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen”: an anthropologist/archaeologist/myth expert, an evolutionary biologist, an adventurer/veterinary surgeon, and a comic book artist — specifically, Flash artist Francis Manapul.
“It’s been an amazing experience traveling around the world on these magnificent adventures!” writes Manapul, who serves as one of the presenters on Beast Legends. “I felt like Indiana Jones or something! Even had run ins with some snakes! I’ve drawn in some of the most bizarre places, from the dense jungles of Vietnam, to a platform above sharks in the Bahamas, to a dark and wet lions cave in Germany, to the high seas of New Zealand! It’s truly been an experience and I’m glad I’ll be able to share them with you!”
The first episode, “Wildman of Vietnam,” premieres Wednesday at 10 p.m. EST/PST. According to Manapul, Beast Legends will air later this year in the United States on Syfy. You can read the official press release below:
New Series Premiere on History Television
Wednesdays at 10 pm ET/PT
Beginning July 7
Using Stunning 3D CGI Effects, Six-Part Series from Anglo-Canadian Film Company Yap Films Journeys to the Frontiers of Science and Fantasy to Investigate Mythological Creatures That Might be Real….and Historical Creatures that Could be Myths.
It’s been an amazing experience traveling around the world on these magnificent adventures! I felt like Indian Jones or something! Even had run ins with some snakes! I’ve drawn in some of the most bizarre places, from the dense jungles of Vietnam, to a platform above sharks in the Bahamas, to a dark and wet lions cave in Germany, to the high seas of New Zealand! It’s truly been an experience and I’m glad I’ll be able to share them with you! Now here’s the official press release for the show: BEAST LEGENDS, an exciting new TV series from Anglo-Canadian film company yap films, journeys to the frontiers of science and fantasy to track down the truth about mythological creatures that could be real…and historical creatures that could be myths. The six-part series will premiere across Canada on History Television, Wednesdays at 10 pm ET/PT beginning July 7.
World history is full of stories about terrifying monsters. Some are myths, but others just might be real. BEAST LEGENDS brings together the ‘Beast Seekers’, an expert team of specialist investigators. This elite, engaging group, a learned kind of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, is made up of:
Kathryn Denning: Myth expert, anthropologist, archaeologist and professor at Toronto’s York University.
Scott Edwards: Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology and Curator of Ornithology at the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University.
Stephen Leonard: Adventurer and Veterinary Surgeon based in Bristol, England.
Francis Manapul: Philippine-born, now Toronto-based, renowned comic book artist.
In each of the six hour-long episodes, the Beast Seekers investigate a different legendary beast, travelling the globe to the actual locations that spawned the stories of these Beasts. They track down clues to find the truth behind the legends. The Beast Seekers uncover historical and eyewitness accounts, and zero in on archaeological and other physical evidence to assemble the most accurate picture possible of what these monsters would be like, where they would live and how they would behave, if they really existed.
Armed with every piece of information the team has discovered, BEAST LEGENDS then moves to the ‘Beast Lab’ to build the creature, first as initial sculpts and wire-frame forms, and finally bringing it to life in stunning 3D CGI.
And then we unleash it on the modern world…..
“BEAST LEGENDS takes the stuff of fantasy and fear – from Griffins and Dragons to Sea Monsters and Wildmen – and unravels the mystery of what these creatures would be if they could really exist,” says Elliott Halpern, an executive producer of BEAST LEGENDS and co-owner of yap films. “The series is a fresh and exciting combination of real biology applied to the realm of fantasy.”