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Wertham documentary drive tops goal, still wants more

The Kickstarter campaign to fund the documentary Diagram for Delinquents, the story of anti-comics crusader Fredric Wertham, has hit its goal of $6,000, so the film will definitely be made. Now it’s just a matter of making it better: The creators are continuing to accept donations, which will be used to buy equipment, presumably to make the film more professional. A $50 donation gets your name into the credits (and on IMDB!) and for $70 or more, they will draw you into one of the animated sequences.

Produced by Sequart Research & Literacy Organization, the short film will put Wertham’s comics commentary into the context of his life’s work, which included fighting segregation and working with juvenile delinquents (which may have led to his erroneous conclusion that comics make good kids go bad—the problem is that he never got to see the good kids). Robert A. Emmons, Jr., will direct. Regardless of whether or not they get that extra handheld, it sounds like it’s going to be a good flick.

Kickstart my art | Will Elder documentary needs your help

Chicken Fat

Gary VandenBergh is directing a documentary called Chicken Fat about MAD Magazine artist Will Elder, and he’s using the fund-raising site Kickstarter to get the $15,000 he needs to do it.

Specifically, he wants to raise funds to complete interviews with Hugh Hefner, Daniel Clowes, William Stout and Joe Dante about the man whose artistic “technique became the defining look of the early MAD and, subsequently, the visual style that defined a generation.” Like other Kickstarter efforts, he’s offering a range of prizes depending on how much you donate, from copies of the complete film on DVD to a credit in the film for high-dollar donations.

In addition to those named abovem the documentary will feature interviews with Maus/Raw creator Art Spiegelman, underground cartoonists Bill Griffith and Jay Lynch, actor and comedian Andy Kindler, MAD fold-in creator Al Jaffee, cartoonist Arnold Roth, artist Drew Friedman, MAD editor Nick Meglin and the late Harvey Kurtzman, Bill Gaines and Will Elder himself. If you’re interested in seeing this come to life, go check it out.

Watch the trailer for Warren Ellis: Captured Ghosts

A trailer has been released for Warren Ellis: Captured Ghosts, the newly announced feature-length documentary about by Sequart and Respect Films, the folks behind Grant Morrison: Talking with Gods.

“Oh god,” Ellis wrote this morning on his blog. “The trailer made it to YouTube, and people are taunting me with it. Let’s get this over with. I have, at best, a face for radio. Unfortunately, I don’t have a voice for radio. This is horrifying and I don’t want to look.”

The documentary is scheduled for completion next year.

John Porcellino: The Movie

Porcellino in action

Porcellino in action

Now here’s a comics-to-film project I didn’t see coming. Minicomics master John Porcellino of King-Cat fame has revealed he’s the subject of an upcoming documentary by filmmaker Daniel Stafford, owner of Denver’s Kilgore Used Books and Comics. The doc is tentatively titled Root Hog or Root Hog or Die: Ballad of the King Cat.

Stafford’s started a blog to chronicle the process and post clips. So far he’s interviewed such comics luminaries as Joe Chiappetra, Jeffrey Brown, Ivan Brunetti and Zak Sally for the project, and he’s looking for fan-shot footage and photos. King-Cat fans, that’s your chance to be a part of film history!

Video of the day: Will Elder documentary

Taking the name from the Fantagraphics book, Will Elder, The Mad Playboy of Art is a 20-minute documentary on the famous cartoonist and Mad artist. Part one is above, part two is below the jump. (via)

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ACT-I-VATE goes to the movies

The ACT-I-VATE Experience

The ACT-I-VATE Experience

Seth Kushner and Carlos Molina have put together a documentary on the webcomics site ACT-I-VATE, which will debut at the Baltimore Comic-Con in October. According to Kushner’s blog, the film will include interviews with many of the site’s creators, making movie stars out of Thomas Baehr, Nick Bertozzi, Pedro Carmago, Mike Cavallaro, Kevin Colden, Nikki Cooke, Molly Crabapple, Mike Dawson, Jim Dougan, Ulises Farinas, Michel Fiffe, Simon Fraser, Maurice Fontenot, Dan Goldman, Tim Hamilton, Dean Haspiel, Jennifer Hayden, Joe Infurnari, Jason Little, Josh Neufeld, Leland Purvis, Kat Roberts, Ryan Roman, Nathan Schreiber & Jeff Newelt.

The film will also be shown at KingCon in Brooklyn this November.

SDCC ’09 | Dark Horse to publish Morgan Spurlock comic book

Morgan Spurlock

Morgan Spurlock

According to the Hollywood Reporter, documentary maker Morgan Spurlock is teaming up with Dark Horse Comics for a comic that will “feature bizarre stories about the U.S.’s obsession with fast food.”

Spurlock, who once spent a month eating only McDonald’s to show the effects it had on his body for his film Super-Size Me, will write Supersized: Strange Tales From a Fast Food Culture, with a mix of artists “scripting and drawing the book.” The book will even have its own Crypt Keeper of sorts, a character called MC Super-Size Me.

Spurlock will be at the Marriot Hotel & Marina this weekend, hosting a casting call for a Simpsons 20th anniversary special he’s filming for FOX. Watch for his new comic next spring.

‘Jaxon’s Last Ride’

Author and comics scholar Patrick Rosenkranz pays homage to the late, pioneering underground cartoonist Jack Jackson in this short documentary film.

‘The Cartoonist’ trailer

I had no idea anyone was making a documentary about Jeff Smith and the self-publishing movement, so I’m thankful to Tom Spurgeon for bringing it to my attention.


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