Call for Book Chapters: Film and Comic Books. Edited by Ian Gordon,
Mark Jancovich, and Matthew P. McAllister
Comic book characters such as Superman and Batman appeared in B movies
and film serials long before the blockbuster adaptations of the 1970s
and 1980s. Likewise Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, and the Hulk featured
in low production value television series from the 1950s to the 1970s.
In recent years film makers have adapted a plethora of comic books for
the screen including Marvel's the X-Men, Spider-Man, Blade, and the
Hulk, Alan Moore's From Hell and The League of Extraordinary Gentleman,
and Road to Perdition and Ghost World. Production deals for comic book
character-based movies have multiplied rapidly. Beyond Hollywood, Asian
film makers have joined the trend with Jet Li appearing in Black Mask
and Michelle Yeoh in the self-described "comic book style" Silver Hawk.
It seems that more is at stake than a shift from low budget/status
productions to blockbusters. Critical acclaim has flowed for many of the
recent efforts and respected directors such as Sam Mendes and Ang Lee
have lent their talents to films based on comic books. At the same time,
particularly since the success of Maus, comic books have gained
increased critical respectability even attaining the dizzy heights of
favourable reviews in the New York Times and the New York Review of
Books, albeit accompanied by discussions of what constitutes a comic
We are looking for articles of between 6,000 and 8,000 words that
address the changing and interrelated dynamics of film and comic book
production and reception. Possible subjects might include, but are not
Shifting notions of legitimacy
Changing nature of popular heroes/mythology
Role of film in popularizing/promoting small indie comics and the
transformation of such texts that may occur
Impact of films on the comic book industry
Role of corporate synergy (such as the DC/Warner Bros connection)
Economics of production
CGI and the blurring of the "real"
Semiological and semiotic comparison of the texts.
Genres and formats
Specific films: Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, X-Men, Blade, From Hell,
Ghost World, Black Mask etc
Please address chapters/proposals by March 15, 2004 to:
Ian Gordon, Email: [log in to unmask]
Department of History,
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
National University of Singapore
11 Arts Link, AS1 05 - 27
Tel: (65) 6874 3838
Fax: (65) 6774-2528
Notification of acceptance of chapters will be made by May 1, 2004.
Ian Gordon, Associate Professor and Head Department of History, National
University of Singapore
Comic Strips and Consumer Culture (Washington: Smithsonian, 1998,
Paperback edition 2002)
Comics and Ideology (New York: Peter Lang, 2001) edited with Matthew
McAllister and Edward Sewell
"Superman on the Set: The Market, Nostalgia and Television Audiences,"
in Quality Popular Television: Cult TV, the Industry, and Fans (London:
British Film Institute and Berkeley: University of California Press,
"Advertising", and "Coca-Cola" in Encyclopedia of American Studies (New
York: Grolier, 2001)
"Cultural Symbols", "Culture of Consumption", "Singapore Airlines", and
"War Bonds", in Encyclopedia of Advertising (Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn,
Mark Jancovich, Professor of Film Studies, University of Nottingham
Series Editor: Inside Popular Film (with Eric Schaefer, Boston College)
Manchester University Press.
Quality Popular Television (edited with James Lyons) BFI, 2003.
Horror: The Film Reader, Routledge, 2001.
The Film Studies Reader (edited with Joanne Hollows and Peter Hutchings)
Rational Fears: American Horror in the 1950s, Manchester University
Approaches to Popular Film, (edited with Joanne Hollows), Manchester
University Press, 1995.
The Cultural Politics of the New Criticism, Cambridge University Press,
Matthew P. McAllister, Associate Professor of Communication, Virginia
Selling Survivor: The use of TV news to promote commercial
entertainment. In A. N. Valdivia (Ed.), A Companion to Media Studies.
Is commercial culture popular culture?: A question for popular
communication scholars. Popular Communication, 1:1, (2003), 41-49.
Television news plugola and the last episode of Seinfeld. Journal of
Communication, 52:2, (2002), 383-401.
Comics and Ideology, edited with Edward Sewell and Ian Gordon. Peter
The Commercialization of American Culture: New Advertising, Control, And
Democracy. Sage, 1996.
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