Friday, August 17, 2007

OT: Film & TV Adaptations of Comics - Intro-A

Along with my Comics Research Bibliography (link on the right side), I've joined a few other groups trying to codify the history of comics over the years; this one was done for the APA-I, a group devoted to indexing comics that's been largely superseded by the Grand Comics Database, but still exists and puts out a quarterly fanzine. There's a new book out - Film and Comic Books (edited by Ian Gordon, Mark Jancovich and Matthew P. McAllister) from the University Press of Mississippi, 2007 - and some discussion of comics adaptations to film that's prompted me to post this checklist. The last version floating around the web is seriously outdated. I'd appreciate hearing from anyone with comments

Film & TV Adaptations of Comics
(Comics Stuff #9 DRAFT)
by Michael Rhode & Manfred Vogel

This list and its format originated with Manfred Vogel. After his August 1997 version, he turned it over to Rhode to continue. Shortly after that Manfred died. I would like this list to be a continuing memorial to him.

Manfred's list was live-action only and I decided to add animated versions of print originals. The list includes any type of comic strip, panel or book that originated on paper, but not original animation even if it later resulted in a printed series. The adaption of comics into the movies has been going on since the creation of motion pictures. British comics historian Paul Gravett told me, "The Lumieres' "Watering the Gardener" from 1895 was based on a comic strip. According to Yves Fremion in 'CinemAction Summer 1990 there were so many versions of this slapstick gag strip that it is difficult to confirm the true inventor but the most famous one is by Christophe alias Marie-Louis-Georges Colomb (as in 'Christopher Columbus'), 1856-1945 - they show the last three panels." On the Grand Comics Database internet mailing list (June 11, 1998), Steve Rowe noted that the Happy Hooligan series of 1900 is generally accepted as the first US comic strip adaptation (or at least legally so). In 1946, Paul S. Nathan observed, "[A]t least fourteen movies last year were based on characters out of the "funnies," and it looks as though there are going to be even more in 1947." Some Japanese animation (anime) is listed but the creation process may be confused; still as Ledoux & Ranney note, "In Japan, most anime videos are based on manga..." Information on Filippino films is also needed; John Lent in his 1997 International Comics and Animation Festival (ICAF) presentation said that 50% of the Filipino movies made are based on comics. When possible, titles are under their original language with cross-references added as necessary.

A second section has been started to list movies with comics creators associated with them, but I would recommend also using Jerry Bails' Who's Who of American Comic Books, 1928-1999 as it is more complete for many creators. The third section lists documentaries and promotional pieces and the fourth is a bibliography. Several books on comics and their live-action adaptations to film and television exist and are cited in the bibliography. Wizard magazine also has a regular column on the topic. Large movie series, such as Mutt and Jeff's over 300 animated films, are listed in alphabetical order while less frequent movies or television shows are listed in date order. DTV stands for direct-to-video, a movie without a theatrical or television release; this is the equivalent to anime's original animation video (OAV) and is used instead. I am deeply indebted to Alfredo Castelli for sharing his knowledge of early-twentieth century adaptations. Entries marked vide Castelli are from his book Here we are again, the first 25 years of American Comics. For current information and rumors about movies in production, I recommend Rob Worley's Comics 2 Film webpage. Additions and corrections are very welcome. Comics Stuff is an occasional publication showcasing aspects of comics collecting and indexing beyond the comic book and toy price guides. * marks new additions since the last version was released.

(Some documentaries have been cited in this section for ease of use)

Comic book/strip [English title] (Creator/PUBLISHER)
Title/series (Country: studio, date, director; notes)
rereleases under different titles/individual titles in series
[Other translated titles]

2000AD Annual/Future Shock episode "Mark 13" ca. 1981 (Steve MacManus & Kevin O'Neill)
Hardware (UK 1990, R. Stanley)
[grm: M.A.R.K. 13]

3x3 Eyes (Yuzo Takada)
[USA: 3x3 Eyes: Altered State (Japan 1991; animated DTV)]
[USA: 3x3 Eyes: Who Needs Enemies (Japan 1991; animated DTV)]
[USA: 3x3 Eyes: Life and Death (Japan 1992; animated DTV)]
[USA: 3x3 Eyes: Blind Flight (Japan 1992; animated DTV)]
[USA: 3x3 Eyes: Perfect Collection: Special Collector's Edition (video collects all four DTVS)]

*300 (Frank Miller)
300 (USA 2007; Zach Snyder)

8-Man [8th Man] (Kazumasa Hirai & Jiro Kuwata, 1963-1968)
8-Man (Japan 1965-1966; 56 episode animated tv series)
[USA: 8th Man 1965-1966; 52 episodes]
[USA: Greatest Adventures of 8th Man Vol 1-4 (videos with 5 tv episodes on each)]
[8-Man After (Japan 199?; animated tv series)]
[USA: 8-Man After: City in Fear (1993; DTV?)]
[USA: 8-Man After: End Run (1993?; DTV?)]
[USA: 8-Man After: Mr. Hallowe'en (1993?; DTV?)]
[USA: 8-Man After: Sachiko's Decision (1993?; DTV?)]
[USA: 8-Man After Perfect Collection (1993?; collects all 4 DTVs)]

Aa! Megamisama! [Oh My Goddess!] (Kosuke Fujishima)
Aa! Megamisama! (Japan 199?; animated tv series?)
Oh My Goddess: Moonlight and Cherry Blossoms (Japan 1993; animated DTV)
Oh My Goddess: Midsummer's Night Dream (Japan 199?; animated DTV)
Oh My Goddess: Burning Hearts on the Road (Japan 199?; animated DTV)
Oh My Goddess: Evergreen Holy Night (Japan 199?; animated DTV)
Oh My Goddess: For the Love of Goddess (Japan 199?; animated DTV)

Abie the Agent (Harry Hershfield) vide Castelli.
Abie the Agent (USA: International Film Service / W. R. Hearst, 1917; 2 animated shorts)
Iska Worreh
Abie Kabibble Outwitting His Rival

Ace Drummond
Ace Drummond (USA 1936; 13 episode serial; edited into Squadron of Doom for television?)

Action Comics/characters in various episodes (DC)
Congo Bill (USA 1948; 15 episode film serial)
The Human Target (USA 1992; 7 episode tv series)
The Vigilante (USA 1945; film serial)

A.D. Police (Tony Takezaki) (This is a comic book spinoff series from Bubblegum Crisis DTVs. It began as manga and then was adapted into anime.)
The Phantom Woman (Japan 1990; animated DTV)
The Ripper (Japan 199?; animated DTV)
The Man Who Bites His Tongue (Japan 199?; animated DTV)

Ada Dans La Jungle (France 1988, Gerard Zingg.)

Addams Family (Charles Addams)
The Addams Family (USA 1964-1966; tv series)
The Addams Family (USA 1973-1975; animated tv series)
The Addams Family (USA 1991)
The Addams Family Values (USA 1993)
The New Addams Family (USA/CANADA? 1998- ; tv series)
The Addams Family Reunion (USA 1998; DTVmovie)

Adventure Kid (Toshio Maeda)
[2 animated DTVs; Japan 1993]

Akira (Katsuhiro Otomo)
Akira (Japan 1988; animated movie. Released in USA in 1989.)
Akira Production Report (Japan 1988; DTV documentary)

Ako Si Abraham [I Am Abraham] (Carlo J. Caparas & Danny Bulanadi)
Ako Si Abraham? (Philippines 197?)

Alan Ford (Max Bunker and Magnus)
Alan Ford E Il Gruppo T.n.t. Contro Superciuk (Italy 1988, Max Bunker. Animated movie)

*Alien vs. Predator (USA 2004; concept based on Dark Horse Comics series)

All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku - SEE Nuku Nuku

Alley Oop (V.T. Hamlin) CHECK vide Castelli.
Archie TV Funnies TV (USA 1971; animated tv series including Moon Mullins, Smokey Stover, Alley Oop, Broom Hilda, Emmy Lou, The Captain and the Kids, and Nancy)
rereleased as The Fabulous Funnies TV (USA 1978)

Ally Sloper
Ally Sloper (UK 1900)

Alma Grande (Petro Zapiain Jose and Jose Suarez Lozano)
Alma Grande El Yaqui Justiciero (Mexico 1965, Chano Urueta)
Alma Grande En El Desierto (Mexico 1966, A. Gonzales)

Alphonse and Gaston (Federick Burr Opper) vide Castelli.
Alphonse and Gaston (USA: American Mutoscope & Biograph Co., 1902/3)
Helping an Irishman (USA: American Mutoscope & Biograph Co., 1902/3)
Alphonse and Gaston No. 3 (USA: American Mutoscope & Biograph Co., 1902/3)
Alphonse and Gaston: Next (USA: American Mutoscope & Biograph Co., 1902/3)

*Amazing Screw-On Head (Mike Mignola)

The Amazing Screw-On Head (USA: Sci Fi Channel, 2006; animated tv series)

American Splendor (Harvey Pekar)
American Splendor (USA 2003; winner of Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize)

Ami-chan no hatsukoi (Japan 1995; animated movie)
[Ami-chan's First Love (1995)]

And Her Name Was Maud (Federick Burr Opper) vide Castelli.
Maud the Mule (USA: International Film Service / W. R. Hearst, 1916; 4 animated shorts)

Andy Capp
Andy Capp (UK 1988; tv series)

Animal Crackers (Roger Bollen)
Animal Crackers (USA 1998; animated tv series)

Anita Bomba (Cromwell and Eric Gratien)
(USA/France 2000; animated internet series at

L'annee 01 (?)
L'annee 01 (France 1972, Jacques Doillon)

Aoi haru (Taiyo Matsumoto)
Aoi haru (Japan 2001; live action)
[USA: Blue Spring (2001)]

Appleseed (Masumune Shirow)
Appleseed (Japan 1988; animated DTV. Released in USA in 1988)
*Appleseed (Japan 2004)

Aquaman (DC)
The Superman-Aquaman Hour of Adventure (CBS, 1967-68; animated tv series)

Archie (USA 1964, Harry Ackerman; un-aired tv series pilot. Available on Video Comics Present: Lost TV Pilots)
The Archie Show (USA 1968; animated tv show; included Sabrina, the teenage witch)
becomes The Archie Comedy Hour (USA 1969; animated tv show)
becomes Archie's Fun House (1970; animated tv show)
becomes Archie's TV Funnies (1971; animated tv show)
The New Archie/Sabrina Hour, (USA 1977; animated tv series)
Archie: To Riverdale and Back Again (USA 1990 tv movie)
Return to Riverdale (1995 video title)
Archie's Weird Mysteries (USA1999-; animated tv series)

Arimpara (O V Vijayan)
Arimpara (India 2003, Murali Nair; animated movie)

Asterix (René Goscinny & Uderzo / DARGAUD)
Astérix chez les Brétons (France 1986; animated)
[Asterix in Britain (1986)]
Asterix erobert Amerika (Germany 1994; animated)
[Asterix Conquers America (1994)]
Astérix et Cléopâtre (Belgium/France 1968)
Astérix et la surprise de César (France 1985)
[Asterix Versus Caesar (1985)]
Astérix et le coup du menhir (West Germany/ France 1989)
[Asterix and the Big Fight (1989)]
Astérix et Obélix (West Germany/ France 1998; live action)
[Asterix and Obelix vs. Caesar (1998)]
[Astérix et Obélix versus César (1998)]
Astérix le Gaulois (Belgium/France 1967)
Douze travaux d'Astérix, Les (France 1975)
[Twelve Tasks of Asterix, The (1975)]
Asterix & Obelix VS Caesar (France 1999; live action)
Asterix and Obelix: Mission Cleopatra (France 2002, Alain Chabat.; live action)
*Asterix and the Vikings (France 2005; animated movie)

Astro Boy - SEE Tetsuwan Atom

Avengers (Stan Lee & Jack Kirby / MARVEL)
Avengers (USA 1999-; 13 episode animated tv series)
*Ultimate Avengers:The Movie (USA 2006; animated DTV)
*Ultimate Avengers 2 (USA 2006; DTV animation)

*Azumi (Yu Koyama)
Azumi (Japan 2003)
Azumi 2: Death or Love (Japan 2005)


cartoonresearch said...

Just wanted to mention that Arimpara (2003)by Murali Nair is a feature film and not an animation; O.V. Vijayan's short story The Wart [Arimpara in Malayalam] is an allegory of power [O.V.Vijayan, Selected Fiction, Penguin Books, 1999]

Sundar Ramanathaiyer

Mike Rhode said...

Ok, thank you. So it sounds as though this is almost completely mistaken - this is a live-action movie based on a short, story, albeit by a cartoonist? If so, I'll probably leave it on the list, but with that explanatory note.

cartoonresearch said...

Thanks Mike. Vijayan was a fiction writer in Malayalam, the language of Kerala, he was a cartoonist & a columnist in English and Malayalam. So we may have to say that 'this is a live-action movie' based on a short story by a fiction writer who also was a cartoonist [or the other way round]~ he was an outstanding fiction writer, a brilliant cartoonist and a humane columnist, who was at ease with words & lines.