Tuesday, July 13, 2010

How Busy Is Jonathan Hickman?

Jonathan Hickman has a Formspring account and on it he answers the odd question that gets thrown his way. Someone asked him about Pax Romana and Hickman decided to answer it in a way more awesome way than I would have imagined. Hit the jump to view the question and Hickman's very revealing answer.

Jonathan Hickman, for those who don't know, is the superstar artist rocketing his way to the top of the heap in a record amount of time. He got a blip on many radars based on The Nightly News from Image and then managed to snag a stack of high, and higher, profile gigs at Marvel. He's been writing Secret Warriors for 17 issues, plus extras, for a while now and his Fantastic Four run is earning pretty good praise. He has recently launched S.H.I.E.L.D. with Marvel and only 2 issues in and many are calling it one of the best series to debut this year.

Years ago he created a mini at Image called Pax Romana. It's about a stack of soldiers and weapons being sent back to Rome in 312AD to help change the past and alter the future. An anonymous punter asked the following simple question in regard to the series:

Any chance of more Pax Romana in the next 2 years?

Hickman then decided to answer with much more information than he really needed to give out:

No. Believe it or not, I don't have a free month for the next two years.

I have one creator-owned project (out later this year) and  
an OGN that's going to take 8-9 months to finish. 

And I'm in the middle of two screenplays. 
Getting all that  done in addition to what I owe Marvel is going to be difficult as is...

I will get back to it.

That's a pretty thorough answer and I wanted to just break it down lest that much info clouded your brain momentarily.

Hickman's dance card for the next two years is completely packed.  This one kind of doesn't surprise me because he's got about 12 more issues of Secret Warriors to come out, he seems to be well planned for the Fantastic Four right up to 2012, at least, and S.H.I.E.L.D. only just launched and he seems to have big plans for that title as well. And that's just what we know about, I'm sure as soon as Secret Warriors closes he'll be onto another title straight away, he's probably already planning it out now.

Then Hickman talks of having a creator owned project looming ahead for 2010. This one doesn't surprise me because when I sat down with him months ago for our Fireside Chat he did drop mention of him writing and drawing a book called PLUS! which will consist of three 20 page stories, each drawn in a different style. He didn't mention at all what it would be about but I'm still excited and almost guaranteed to pick it up. Hickman drew The Nightly News himself and his graphic design background makes for an extremely interesting comic experience.

I think this would keep him busy enough, especially if you throw any illustration into the mix, but then Hickman mentions an OGN (original graphic novel) as well and that intrigues me greatly.  Is this a creator owned project or something in Marvel continuity. DC released Joker as an OGN and it sold pretty well. I think Hickman could do something similar but I'd probably prefer to see this as an independent project. Will Marvel even release it through their creator owned line, Icon, like the recent Brian Bendis and Alex Maleev book, Scarlet, or will it be back to Image for Hickman? There's too much I can speculate on in regards to this project so I'll just say what I know; I'll also be buying this.

On top of all this Hickman also mentions writing two screenplays, being right in the middle of them in fact. The same speculation applies here but this time with a greater scope. Imagine Hickman writing a Marvel movie, one of those cheaper ones like Doctor Strange or something, how awesome would that be? Or maybe he's taking a pass at the Avengers script for Joss Whedon, you never know, but I'd assume these two scripts are most likely independent ventures. And I can only assume they're already looking awesome.

In a world of solicitations that only go 3 months into the future sometimes it's interesting to get a peak into a creator's crystal ball and sneak peaks at what might be coming down the line. It excites me to know he might be putting out even more stuff as the months, and years, pass. I only hope he can keep the level of quality up. How one man can be so prolific escapes me, but also inspires.

I look forward to hearing more news about all of these projects. Let us know in the comments what you think of the news of Hickman doing even more work in the future.

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Ivan said...

I had no idea he was also an artist. And he's pretty good, from what I've seen.

Ryan said...

But where is the ending for "Red Mass From Mars"? I know it's a different artist but it's been about a year since the last issue and about a year before that issue as well.

KentL said...

The OGN is probably not for Marvel, unless something has changed recently. Quesada has said a few times before that OGN's just don't make fiscal sense for Marvel.

Love the 3 20-page stories anthology-like title that Hickman describes. Very intrigued by that. Hickman is definitely a rising star to watch right now.

forrest said...

I will be buying all of that. Hickman's ny favorite writer right now. I can't wait to see him go even further in the industry.

Ryan K Lindsay said...

@Ryan - wasn't there an announcement recently that Hickman had finished the final issue for Red Mass For Mars and it was off to the printer. I'm pretty sure it was on Twitter, the source of all good comic news!

Anonymous said...

It appears Red Mass for Mars may come out next week!

blueairplane said...

I'll have to plan to make room for all this in my comics budget. I have loved everything I've read from Hickman. (Sadly, what I have read is appallingly little, as I still need to make room in my comics budget for Secret Warriors and his Image stuff, but that's the way things go.)

Simon McDonald said...

I just can't seem to get into Hickman's Marvel work. Love his creator-owned stuff, but for whatever reason SECRET WARRIORS & FANTASTIC 4 has left me feeling cold. Perhaps I'll give it another go in trades.

Matt Duarte said...

Simon, you should definitely check out S.H.I.E.L.D., it's incredibly enjoyable, and in my opinion, Hickman's best work at Marvel.

IronFist Fan said...

I give Hickman atleast 5yrs and he will be one hell of a writer. He is a smart writer i love his secret warriors and S.H.I.E.L.D. i want to see more of what he got

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