Colossus was first published in 2000 by Crazyfish. I read it and was blown away by the scope and audacity of the story. It was epic. I had not met its creator then. Shortly after I joined Pixar a certain production with an adjective that usually precedes the word, "Hulk" was starting to crew up. A story supervisor was brought in to do Story Supervising on that golden production. It was then that I came face to face with the force of nature that is Mark Andrews.
Mark talks to you as if he's trying to drown out an F5 class tornado behind him--and winning. It was all clear to me now. Mark had done the book straight ahead, pen and marker--just did it. I'll find out later that that is the only mode on the "Mandrews," as he's sometimes called here, operates. Straight ahead. More like, blasting through. I suspect that he consumes plutonium pills.
A sample page. Sneak peek at the new Colossus.
Well, the occasion of this post is that he is re-doing Colossus. Yep. A book that is done and working well and great, he's re-doing. Originally at 120 some pages Mark is going for more pages. Can't blame the guy. He can, after all, do it. Once he sets his mind to it, it's a foregone conclusion. If any of you have seen the storyboards done on The Incredibles, you'll know that he wrangled that monster job (20,656 story frames) and set the tone (as well as do a ton of the boards himself), and if there was any wavering it was never apparent. So, doing a comic book of nearly two hundred pages in record time is a mere mortal walk in the park.
Brad Kick-ass-and-tell-it-like-it-is Bird on the right and Mark Blood-n'-Guts Andrews on the left. A rare docile moment for those two. Must've been after Sunday mass.
An entry on Powells.com about Colossus.
Winds heavy with mist and lands shaped by times unimaginable set the stage for COLOSSUS, a being forged of metal...and something far, far more! From the Annie Award-winning storyboard artist of THE IRON GIANT, this tale of intrigue and adventure is sure to ignite the imaginations of fantasy lovers everywhere, as the intense ferocity of medieval battle engulfs the life of a wayward hero for hire. It`s the yearning for complete humanity that drives Colossus to work, and eventually to all-out war, against the tyrannical overlords of the medieval world he calls home. Creatures of the occult and beasts of legend hamper his existence, but it`s an existence through which he`s committed to persevere! With a pin-up gallery featuring Mike Mignola, Troy Nixey, Scott Morse, and others, COLOSSUS is presented here in one hefty volume destined to reign as a favorite on any bookshelf.
This is just three pages in. Mayhem is still in the offing
He is chasing a deadline that will put him in a table at San Diego Comic-con this summer hawking a brand spankin' new version of his opus. I'm thinking you all ought to know to find him and get a signed copy. In the meantime he's hard at work. In the mornings when I still had an office near him I would holler at his solid mass looming over his dwarfed Cintiq, "Mark!" He knows what I'm asking.
"Page one hundred thirty!"
I'll skip a day or a week. Then remember to poke my head in.
"Page one hundred forty-five!"
"Page one hundred sixty-one!"
He's closing in on his printer's deadline. Like this was ever in question. I had agreed to do a pin-up for him and if my process is like most of you, I'll agonize over it over some days and change my mind a dozen times. One drawing. And each day I can hear Mark tighten his grip on that story, now expanded to have a proper prologue and story expansions to add to an already satisfying whole, his grin getting wider.
"Page one hundred sixty-six!"
No tornadoes about. Just Mark.