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Hoo-Boy…

It’s mid-June and Comic Con is right around the corner! I’m a guest at San Diego this year (thank you, guest committee) and I’ll post my final list of panels and appearances soon.

A Long Time Ago, In A Cinema Near Back Bay…

I didn’t see STAR WARS on May 25th 40 years ago. I actually saw it at a sneak preview at the Charles Cinema in Boston the week before. Back then it was not uncommon for studios to do sneaks in college towns to get an idea of how a given film would play to young audiences.

I had been aware of STAR WARS since seeing the title displayed on a silver advance poster at a San Francisco theatre the previous Christmas. It didn’t look like much, but the director lived across the bay and I had enjoyed AMERiCAN GRAFFITI. Might be worth a look.

In February I saw the first trailer in front of the Lily Tomlin Art Carney movie, THE LATE SHOW. It looked stupid. Some blonde surfer dude giving a lackluster “Hello” to the couple of robots he was cleaning. Yeah, that was going to be a winner. Probably another LOGAN’S RUN. I must admit the gorilla co-pilot and floating hypo droid had me curious – what’s all that about?

Mid-May, a few months later, I had finished my bartending shift at my families’ restaurant in Boston and was walking home to my apartment. As I passed the Charles, I saw a line starting to form outside and I remembered seeing an ad about the sneak in the recent Boston Phoenix. “Oh yeah, that space thing. I got nothing on tonight. Might as well see it.”

The line was not long, but there was an excited buzz echoing through it. Advance word seemed to be the picture was good, though no one was talking specifics about it. I paid my 3.50, took a seat in the center of the theatre and waited as the seats filled around me. Lights went down, the Fox fanfare came up (the extended version, rare in front of movies at the time) and ten words appeared on screen: “A Long Time Ago In A Galaxy Far, Far, Away…” I smiled. Cute, it’s a fairy tale. A moment of darkness, then…

Well, you know the rest.

It would be at least a week until anyone I knew would experience the surprise and delight I felt that night. In that time before the internet, when fan magazines were few and information was hard to come by, it was kind of fun to walk around with the knowledge that something big and fun and rather important was on its way. That by the time my friends and siblings settled into the Coronet Theatre with their Milk Duds, I would already be old friends with C3PO, Darth Vader, Leia Organa and a zillion aliens. For about a week STAR WARS belonged only to me and the relatively few folks across the country who had wandered into that special early screening.

And that was very cool.

Happy Harley-Days

Christmas is coming, and with it, three new holiday tales written by me and starring Harley Quinn! November 30th sees the release of the DC Rebirth Batman Annual #1, which features a story with the legendary Bat-artist Neal Adams! I had a great time with this, and it was such fun to do a sequel/homage to Neal’s classic 1969 Christmas tale, “The Silent Night of The Batman.” On December 14th, Elsa Charretier renders what happens when Harley hosts her own Christmas entertainment extravaganza in the DC Holiday Special. Wonder Woman shares warm holiday memories. Batman does his last minute shopping. Flash and Captain Cold go caroling. Black Canary and Zatanna…well, I don’t want to give the whole thing away. Just drop into the party, you’ll be glad you did. And finally, Harley and Ivy appear in a sweet little love story (not really a holiday tale, but close enough to Christmas to count) by my pal Bill Morrison for Marc Andreyko’s very important Love Is Love book, out on December 21st.  Check out the sneak peaks below!

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Comic Con coming

It’s that time again! Comic Con International, July 20th thru 24th, San Diego Convention Center. Dave Alvarez did the cartoon below for a signing last year, but I think it still applies, maybe more than ever this summer…

SIGNING

Here’s where you can find me during the big show:

Thursday, July 21

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM  I’ll be signing at the MATTEL BOOTH with Batman himself, KEVIN CONROY! Mattel will be debuting a very special all new VR experience, and if you are a fan of the classic B:TAS, you won’t want to miss it!

2:00 PM – 3:00 PM  PAUL DINI 1 – ON – 1 PANEL I’ll be speaking with moderator JOHN CUNNINGHAM about the creation of my new graphic novel DARK NIGHT – A TRUE BATMAN STORY, and taking questions about future projects, cartoons, comics, Harley Quinn, Jingle Belle, and whatever else anyone wants to talk about.  Room 6DE.

3:30 PM – 4:30 PM I’m signing at the DC BOOTH #1915

 

Friday, July 22

11:00 AM – 11:30 AM ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY CONX PANEL I’ll be doing a Q & A on the Entertainment Weekly stage, Embarcadero Marina Plaza North, 400 Kettner Blvd.

1:30 PM – 2:30 PM I’m back the DC BOOTH for another signing.

 

I won’t be at the following animation/TV panels, but you should check them out anyway…

JUSTICE LEAGUE ACTION PANEL (Thursday, 12 PM, Room 25ABC) swing by to get a peek at the new show and chat all things DCAU with Alan Burnett, Butch Lukic, Jim Krieg and that Conroy fella again.

Disney’s PENN ZERO PART TIME HERO and THE 7D presentation, co-moderated by my good buddy and 7D creator Tom Ruegger (Friday, 2:3 PM, Room 5AB)

THE KILLING JOKE premiere (Friday, 9 PM Ballroom 20) Good grief, more Conroy!

MARVEL ANIMATION (Saturday 12:30 PM, Room 6A)

SID & MARTY KROFFT (Saturday, 2 PM Room23ABC) Meet the brothers who revolutionized Saturday Morning TV with such shows as H.R. Pufinstuff, Lidsville, and The Land of The Lost. (Okay, I may have to drop in on this one.)

BATMAN UNLIMTED: MECHS & MUTANTS (Sunday, 12:15 PM Room 6BCF)

ANIMANIACS LIVE! (Sunday 3:00 PM Room 6DE) You don’t want to miss this! The original Animaniacs cast, Rob Paulsen, Jess Harnell and Tress MacNeille, reunite to perform the classic cartoon series songs along with songwriter/accompaniest Randy Rogel! Come and sing along! You all know the words…”United States, Canada, Mexico, Panama…”

DC SUPERHERO GIRLS: HERO OF THE YEAR (Sunday,10 AM, Room 6BCF) The new feature length movie whose stellar voice cast includes MISTY LEE as Big Barda! And speaking of Misty…

MISTY LEE, the voice of RED SONJA will be signing copies of the new DVD, RED SONJA – QUEEN OF PLAGUES along with writer GAIL SIMONE at the SHOUT FACTORY BOOTH, Thursday at 11 AM!

See you in San Diego.

Keep cool…

We’re still working on getting things up and running, both here on the site AND with the return of the Radio Rashy podcasts.  Lots of good friends have told us they miss the old show, so we’re going to be doing some more of them this summer.  I should have some more information on that with the next update.

Today…

It’s a zillion degrees here in LA and Super Rica is beating the heat through meditation.  That looks refreshing.

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