Running Away To Hollywood with Brian K. Vaughan

Thu, May 11th, 2006 at 12:00am PDT

Comic Books
Jeremy Goldstone, Guest Contributor

"X-Men/Runaways"

Brian K. Vaughan is going Hollywood.

Not that he's giving up comic books. In fact, part of his trip to Hollywood involved signing copies of "Runaways/X-Men" at Meltdown Comics for Free Comic Book Day. But the Eisner Award-winning writer of books such as DC Comics' "Y: The Last Man," "Ex Machina" and Marvel Comics' "Runaways" is making the big move from San Diego to Los Angeles, to further his movie career, having just turned a screenplay in for the "Y: The Last Man" movie.

"It's just the first draft, but people seem to like it so far," Vaughan told CBR News. "It doesn't mean they are going to use it, but at least it gives me some input."

Having been disappointed at earlier, fairly faithful attempts to turn "Y" into a screenplay, Vaughan is changing things around a bit for his version. "I wrote the beginning of Y when I was 22, and a lot of it I hate now," he said. "I've basically kept the characters the same, and written a different story for them. I know a lot of people have said the book would only work as an HBO miniseries, but I don't think that's true. Of course, I know how the book is going to end."

"Y The Last Man" #46

Although he is looking into writing more movies and television work, Vaughan still wants to stay a comic book writer.

"I was an NYU film school geek, so I always figured I would be involved with film more," he said. "Still, I want to keep doing comics. I don't want to be total Johnny Sellout. I'm looking to do a lot more independent, creator-owned works in the future."

In the meantime, Vaughan has plenty of comic books to write. "Y: The Last Man" has a year's worth of story left to it before it ends, and "Ex Machina" has at last two more years to it.

"There's a bet at the WildStorm offices as to who will get to issue 26 first, us or Planetary," Vaughan joked. "So far, it looks like we're winning."

The book that got the most attention on FCBD though was "Runaways," from average comic readers, to kids, to a few entertainment industry professionals asking about if it was going to become a television show or a movie.

"Ex Machina" #21

"I have no idea, but they're always the last to tell me about stuff like that," Vaughan said. "I could see 'Runaways' as either, depending on how they wrote it. Just so long as they keep the key elements, that all parents are evil."

Vaughan said he was happy that Marvel had picked "Runaways" to be their book for FCBD this year, but kept it in perspective. "We're just the guest stars. We're riding on the coat tails of Joss [Whedon[ and the 'Astonishing X-Men.'"

Vaughan was very pleased by his FCBD artist of Skottie Young. "I love his stuff," he said. "It seems to polarize a lot of people, but I remember as a kid walking into a comic book shop and hearing all the old guys complain about Todd McFarlane on Spider-Man. I think Skottie is a lot like that."

Although he doesn't plan to stay on "Runaways" forever, Vaughan hopes that the characters will survive beyond his tenure. "When I create something for a comic universe, I want them to be a part of it that anyone can use. I hope that Runaways last until long after I'm dead."

 
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