We were in attendance at Comic-Con this year where we got to watch the panel for the upcoming graphic novel “Mother Nature” written by the iconic (and recent ACADEMY AWARD WINNER) Jamie Lee Curtis, Russell Goldman, and was illustrated by Karl Stevens.
About “Mother Nature”: Eco-horror graphic novel, set in New Mexico, and adapted from Jamie’s script for the forthcoming Comet Pictures/ Blumhouse film.
We learned so much from being in the audience of the panel at Comic-Con. Here are some highlights:
- It took about 3-4 years to come to fruition after Jamie Lee Curtis had the idea for the graphic novel.
- Jamie Lee Curtis says she cannot draw, and joked she can only draw stick people.
- Karl Stevens described his process as follows: he took the script and storyboarded it, figured out how it would read visually, collected references, then went page by page to pencil it. He described it as a very laborious process. He stated he doesn’t use digital; everything is ink.
- Several times throughout, they spoke about how important it was that the indigenous community was represented authentically as “it was written by 3 white people.”
- Russell Goldman said this is a story about the decisions one generation is making that is leaving behind for the next, and gave the example of climate change.
- The story will have a lot of blood and some people die in gruesome and intense ways.
- When asked what their favorite deaths are in the novel, Jamie Lee Curtis said hers is the hail stones to the head. Russell Goldman’s is when someone dies in the shower.
- The release date was pushed back a few times as they wanted to ensure that the dialogue was right.
- The story highlights the impact climate change is having. They encouraged us to look up YouTube videos of hail storms, how it has been record-breaking hottest weeks, etc.
- The story is set in a fictitious town, but they said it could be real, as effects from climate change is happening now.
- Karl Stevens said he feels like the most important part of a comic book is where the words are at (along with pictures).
- Comic-Con was the first time they all saw the finished product!
- During the Q&A with the audience, a fan who asked a question was wearing a “Cat lovers against white supremacy” T-shirt, and Karl Stevens said he has that same shirt.
- Jamie Lee Curtis really wanted an alternate cover that was much more gruesome (see above photo). However, she agrees that the cover that was chosen was the correct one for the story. The alternate cover she loved was printed in a super exclusive Comic-Con edition and limited to only 100 copies!
- What inspired Jamie Lee Curtis is that she is human, and she is seeing the effect that the climate crisis has reaped on the world. The inspiration is terror and fear that we are headed to a very dangerous place.
- Karl Stevens said he has wanted to be a cartoonist since he was 6 years old.
- When asked about the importance of being an activist, Jamie Lee Curtis shared that she has a trans daughter, and that she sought to learn. She said we’re all learning, trying to figure out everything. She said she doesn’t see herself as an activist, but sees herself as a human who is learning. She believes we should ask questions and seek to learn and grow and understand.
- Jamie Lee Curtis joked that she invented Instagram. She shared that a long time ago, she had a blog – iPhoneys.blogspot.com. She said that she loves photography and decided to post photos on a blog and actively did until Instagram came out. You can still visit this blog today, whose last post was in 2012.
- Russell Goldman encourages everyone to seek out Native stories written by Native people.