Last week I returned to my old College. Uxbridge College, in fact, a place of learning I attended back in the eighties, and returned to six years later for a night school course. It was where I learned who I was, where I made some of my oldest friends, and where, even if I didn’t follow up on it for over a decade, I decided what I wanted to do with my life.
And last week I returned to give a keynote speech. (more…)
Over a decade ago, back in early 2004 in fact, I had an idea for a six issue mini series. Entitled 52 Pickup, it was a ‘Battle Royale’ of Super villains, all fighting each other in a ‘last man standing’ fight for an item of unimaginable power. I spoke with Mark Paniccia at Marvel about it, but nothing ever happened. I worked with artist Gary Lister on a pitch but again, nothing happened. Over the following ten years I tinkered with it here and then, looking at ways to make it work with a variety of other artists including Jake Minor and Denis Calero, but it never came to anything. And then a year back I moved into film and television, and while working through some old stories, I realised exactly how to make it work.
Remove the Super villains.
And, after I completely re-worked the story from a page one rewrite, I’m excited to announce that I’ve sold 52 Pickup to Jonathan Sothcott of Richwater Films, they of movies like Vendetta and We Still Kill The Old Way, and I’m finishing the screenplay at the moment. More news as it’s announced. Suffice to say, I’m stupidly excited, and Jonathan (who I met through his producing of Cartel) is a joy to work with.
This weekend is the Gallifrey One Convention in Los Angeles, and again, I’m honoured to have been invited as a guest. I’ll be on a few panels and suchlike over the weekend, interviewing Eve Myles on stage and things like that – here are the places I’ll be over the weekend.
So again, the news that Dodge & Twist is once more returning to the screen has hit the internet, and once more I’m getting people emailing me about this. I spoke about this in 2011 when it was first announced, and I spoke about it two years back when Cole Haddon was announced as having written a new draft, but for those who haven’t heard, here it is again.
First off, full credit and good luck to both Edgar Wright and Ahmet Zappa for this film, because it is by now a completely different movie to the story that first appeared, back in 2007, when I pitched Dodge & Twist to AIT/PlanetLar.
So the year draws to a close, and with it a roller-coaster ride of a career path, which has slowly made the transition from comics to film and television, while also moving me into the world of reluctant reader novels. I’ve made some new, amazing friends, reconnected with old ones and I’ve lost people along the way, but at the end of the day, I’m in a far better place than I was at the start of the year – and I wasn’t doing too bad back then.
As pretty much most of you know, I spend a lot of time doing School Talks, going to students around the world with my ‘Change The Channel’ talk, aimed at getting reluctant readers to get back into books, whatever type of book it is. It’s popular, it’s linked to above on the SCHOOL TALK and WORKSHOPS buttons, and most importantly it works. And, due to my writing workload, this year I’ve dropped down to only a couple of talks a month.
I’ve been contacting schools recently to let them know that I’m starting to book the remaining dates of the academic year, and I’ve had a couple of similar sounding conversations this week.
I’ve loved Wrestling all of my life. From a young child I grew up on Saturday lunchtime Wrestling on ITV, watching sports legend Dickie Davies call matches involving such British luminaries as Big Daddy or Giant Haystacks, enjoying the pantomime and pageantry that Wrestling gave me. I knew it wasn’t ‘real’, but at the same time I knew that these guys were athletes, and that the performances that they gave were filled with real danger, and life ending injuries.
It took me thirty years before I’d write any kind of Wrestling related product, and that was the screenplay In The Ring.