For years, we’ve posted announcements, news, updates and editorials about the ever-evolving state of the Elfquest movie hither and yon across the Elfquest web site: on the Scroll of Colors forum, in the news section, in the editorials section. And for an uncomfortably long time, I’ve been aware that the links and cross-links and cross-cross-links have grown to resemble a mess of strangleweed, the likes of which even Winnowill couldn’t imagine!
At long last, I’m pulling all the chapters into one place. Here, you will find not only the latest news available, but also a history – in chronological order – of previous efforts, from most recent all the way back to the earliest strivings. I do this for two reasons. First, to provide a sensible thread of events for the historians out there. Second, in the hope that the less patient will realize that however long you’ve been waiting for this project to materialize, we’ve been through much much more. So be merciful in your zeal!
February 7, 2011 - We’ve heard two pieces of good news recently. One, Warner Bros. has renewed their option in the Elfquest property. This means that they’re still committed to further development to whip this four-tribe howling saga into a movie. Two, they’ve also signed on a producer to the project – again, another sign of WB’s ongoing interest and desire to, as the phrase goes, “get ‘er done.” The producer is Lorenzo di Bonaventura, who’s got a great reputation in Hollywood as someone who makes movies happen. We’re keeping fingers crossed!
Updated February 7, 2011 – moved to the much-nicer comic reader – Click here (and scroll to the bottom of the page) for a treat for everyone who’s curious about what the storyboard for an Elfquest movie might look like. This is Act One of the imagined film as it was pitched to the Edward Pressman Film company back in 1994. Wendy spent months breaking down the elements of the story as it was presented in the graphic novels, and rearranging them in a way that would make sense for the dynamics of a movie. Please keep in mind two things: One, this is an early attempt at a storyboard. It will not be used – or even referred to – in the current effort. Two, yes indeed, every single frame of this storyboard is new artwork that Wendy created. Although it might appear at first glance that much of it was copied from the original comics, it is all new and original work.
December 3, 2009 - Email from director/screenwriter Rawson Thurber, which contains but a single word: “Finished.”
Now that the draft of the screenplay is in, comes the hard work of trimming approximately 1/3 of it. Some big guns – and big pens – may be called in.
July 14, 2009 - Nearly a year after it happened, I’m finally able to post the full video of the Elfquest panel that ran at the 2008 San Diego Comic-Con International Expo. The entire 49-minute video is now on YouTube. Since they don’t allow anything longer than 10 minutes, it’s been split into five segments. Each is titled “Elfquest movie panel part 1 (through 5).” It’s a lot of fun and gives you the entire show, including the Elfquest slide presentation leading up to the question-and-answer segment.
July 7, 2009 – Click here (and scroll to the bottom of the page) for a treat for everyone who’s curious about what the storyboard for an Elfquest movie might look like. This is Act One of the imagined film as it was pitched to the Edward Pressman Film company back in 1994. Wendy spent months breaking down the elements of the story as it was presented in the graphic novels, and rearranging them in a way that would make sense for the dynamics of a movie. Please keep in mind two things: One, this is an early attempt at a storyboard. It will not be used – or even referred to – in the current effort. Two, yes indeed, every single frame of this storyboard is new artwork that Wendy created. Although it might appear at first glance that much of it was copied from the original comics, it is all new and original work.
June 16, 2009 – No news of substance since the last entry. Yes, we have had several back and forth messages with Rawson Thurber, the director and screenwriter on the project. He is diligently working on the first draft of the screenplay; when he finishes, it will go to the higher-ups at Warner Bros. for their take on it. We’re hoping they will like it enough to then green-light the project. That’s when it will (keep fingers crossed) go from “development hell” into pre-production. And then we’ll all know a lot more.
October 18, 2008 – Posted yet another, increasingly impatient MySpace blog entry.
September 20, 2008 – Posted another blog entry to EQ on MySpace.
September 1, 2008 – Posted the following blog entry on the Elfquest MySpace page.
July 9, 2008 – This is the latest major news that we had. We received word early in the morning that Warner Brothers finalized a deal to license the property to develop and produce an Elfquest movie. The first (of many) industry announcement appeared in Hollywood Reporter. You can read the text here, although the actual page has been archived by HR. Other reports appeared within hours; a few of them are here and here and here and here. If you Google the words “Elfquest” and “movie” together, you’ll get a long list of other announcements from that time.
Wendy wrote a Wendy Words editorial about it.
New, bustling Elfquest Forum topics sprang up here and here. And even though the forum itself was hacked and damaged in February, 2009, we managed to resurrect most of the topics and discussions, which continue to this day on a brand new, redesigned web site.
April 14, 2005 – In an attempt to summarize everything we knew as of April 2005 (when Elfquest had been with DC Comics for a couple of years), I wrote this column. We had signed with DC in 2003, and while they were great at producing beautiful books (the Elfquest Archive editions are a testament to that), they did little else in the areas of merchandising or helping get an EQ movie off the ground. Their license expired in February, 2007 and we decided – based on the lack of certain results – not renew it. Luckily, Elfquest’s agents were right there, ready to approach other interested parties.
February 28, 2003 – We signed a four-year agreement with DC Comics, which gave them the rights to exploit publishing, merchandising, and entertainment (in other words, movie) rights in Elfquest. You can read about that here.
May 10, 2002 – By May 2002 we’d been working with Wolfmill for a couple of years. They held the rights to shop the Elfquest property around, and we had been making progress with the European group Sceneries International when some economic bad news hit the fan. Here is what we posted at that time.
February 27, 2001 – From the “we know what we know because we read it in the trade magazines” department: Click here for what was being announced at the American Film Market the following year.
February 20, 2000 – For the 2000 American Film Market, Wendy wrote a new Wendy Words editorial about her efforts to get one of the EQ movie’s stars ready for her close-up.
October 13, 1999 – Daily Variety (the premiere news source for the film industry) printed an article talking about, among other things, the Elfquest movie! We have reprinted the article here, with permission.
June 3, 1999 – Sceneries partnered with Lightpoint Animation to try out some early computer animation tests of Cutter, Chief of the Wolfriders, to demonstrate what an animated Elfquest might look like.
March 11, 1999 – Shortly after we signed with Wolfmill, they secured an arrangement with Sceneries International, a European-based company, to adapt Elfquest to animation. Here’s the press release that we sent out.
late 1998/early 1999 – Once our option with Ed Pressman expired, we entered into a partnership with good friends Craig Miller and Marv Wolfman (collectively Wolfmill Productions). Both men have had long careers in both comics and film, and we felt fortunate to have them shepherd Elfquest through the creative and administrative minefields of Hollywood.
sometime 1990s, part 2 – A second “recap” sort of posting appeared a little while after the previous one, covering events that happened around 1993 and 1994.
sometime 1990s – It used to be that the most asked question in all of Elfquest was,
“When’s the next issue coming out?” That, of course, was born of the fact that in the beginning all Wendy and I could manage was one solitary issue every four months. So the old question has been replaced with, “What about the Elfquest animated movie?” This is the first piece I can recall posting about the overall experience of trying to make that dream happen. Certainly there were other expressions in print previously, but this summarizes our feelings for the web, when the Elfquest site was only a very few years old.
Many people are looking to get a chance to do a voice for the Elfquest movie (assuming it is animated). Here is a very good article on voices in the movies by Mark Evanier. Mark has been in the entertainment business a long time, and what he doesn’t know, probably isn’t all that important. This article is a few years old, but still relevant.
In Elfquest #8, (1997) we published the individual images of a sample bit of animation done by Wendy Pini. We’ve colored that animation, and put it into an animated format, and it is now available for your viewing pleasure!