Matt Brady at Newsarama has interviewed writer Greg Pak about "The Citizen," Pak's contribution to "Secret Identities: The Asian American Superhero Anthology." Here's an excerpt:
NRAMA: Speaking about the tone of the story - it seems like it could be straight-ahead super-hero adventure, but is there a hint of anything else in there?"The Citizen" was written by Pak with art by Bernard Chang. The full six page story will appear in "Secret Identities: The Asian American Superhero Anthology," which hits stores on April 15.
GP: With a patriotic superhero and the President of the United States as your central characters, you're in for a tasty, heaping portion of political subtext, supertext, and satire. On one level, the story gives us a chance to explore and challenge very different interpretations of what it means to be a patriot and a citizen. But we're also having a lot of goofball fun with giant airships and Nazi gremlins and whatnot.
In April, Asian Canadian filmmaker and cartoonist Ann Marie Fleming learned that she and her graphic novel "The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam" had been nominated for two Eisner Awards (for Best Reality Based Work and Best Painter or Multimedia Artist). Tonight at the San Diego Comic-Con, the winners will finally be announced. Asian American Comics spoke with Fleming about the experience.
Asian American Comics: You and your very first graphic novel have been nominated for Eisners! How did you find out and how does it feel?
Ann Marie Fleming: I can't tell you how excited/surprising it is to be nominated for two Eisners! i'm totally chuffed (if that's a real word...). does this mean I have cred? Jackie Estrada tracked down my info address from my web site trying to find me.
AAC: What kind of reactions have you gotten as a result?
AMF: Besides the "congratulations" I've got from my friends and colleagues who I told about my nominations, I haven't really gotten any reactions. I told my editor, who was excited, but because this is an "old" book (it came out in September), there's no money to fly me down for the awards, and there are so many nominees in so many catagories, the Eisners can't really bring everyone down...
But I am going to get my ass down there, anyway, and soak it all in. I've never been to Comicon. So, there you go.
AAC: Any new opportunities for you and the book?
AMF: It's a lot like independent filmmaking, I find. You get some great press, or some great buzz or you get into some great festivals or win some awards, even, but it doesn't necessarily turn itself into new opportunities for distribution or even your next project. But I'm going to try and work it. I'm just so thrilled to have the book out there, and glad it's getting some kudos. It's weird, it's nominated in the reality based comic, which makes sense. But it is also nominated in the best painter/multi-media artist category, which totally blew me away. As you know, it is a collage book. So, it has my own drawings, but it is also a complilation of many different media and artists' works from my film. So, that's pretty gratifying, and a lot of people can share in the acknowledgement of this work.
AAC: What's next for you? Getting tempted back into the world of comics?
AMF: I have a lot of ideas for new books. I'd love to do another one. I've got another film I want to adapt into a graphic novel, plus some new ideas. I'll let you know what's happening next. I think it's a fallow summer for me. I'm just trying to get my latest animated film out there (running (heart, mind, body, spirit), which is using the resonances of acupuncture needles as a way to tell stories. It's a continuation of my Stickgirl series (Stickgirl, by the way, is my narrator in the graphic novel "The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam.' She's very versatile and works in a variety of different mediums. You've got to do that sort of thing if you are going to survive in our ever-changing economy). It was commissioned by the Victoria Film Festival and the Victoria Symphony. The symphony has this national competition for composers to score original music to silent films and this is the first year they had original films to go with them. It was pretty exciting to see it played live to a four different scores with an 80 piece orchestra infront of a live audience.
And I'm waiting for someone to say "I loved your doc, I loved the book, let's help you make that feature length film about your great grandfather, his troubled times and his great love, Poldi." "Shanghai Follies," it will be called.
AAC: Any upcoming appearances or releases or screenings we should know about?
AMF: I'm still trying to plug away "The French Guy" on the "fromheretoawesome" web-festival site. (Go there and click on my film!). I'm going to be doing a few visits, in the next months, to campuses to talk about my doc and the comic. And I know I am forgetting some stuff here, but that's about it. I'm working on a script now, a father/son relationship with a multi-culti bent... North Americam son meets Iranian father meets a Chinese poet. I know, sounds like a commercial blockbuster! I think I'm going to animate it, too.