Filmmaker Michael Bay’s new interactive comic book publishing house, 451 Media, has released one of its premiere line of graphic novels. The company’s initial slate was first introduced at this year’s New York Comic Con. The company did a promotional interview with best-selling writer George Pelecanos – creator of the HBO crime drama The Wire – to give readers a behind the scenes sneak peek of his graphic novel debut, titled SIX.
SIX is described as a searing tale of warfare at its worst and fighting soldiers at their best. When the wife of a former Marine buddy finds herself a target of a vicious Mexican cartel, she ends up turning to her husband’s old squad for help. Pelecanos is collaborating with Hollywood director Michael Bay’s 451 Media, which blends published content with digital video by using a technologically advanced ink in the printing process that accesses content via an app when a smart device is “touched” to it.
Check out the motion book design, preview panels and an interview with George Pelecanos, below.
As a writer, what are the differences between writing for film and TV versus writing a graphic novel?
The process of writing a graphic novel is not significantly different from the process writing a film script in my opinion. You “see” both as a film as your writing. The matter of collaboration is also very similar between the two. Andi Ewington, a tremendous graphic novelist, did a bang-up job on SIX, as did the artist. I watched and learned.
Why do you think people still like to read graphic novels, be it traditional paper or on a tablet?
I think people still like to read graphic novels because they’re an intriguing blend of the arts, the visuals and the written word. The 451 concept takes the sensory experience of reading a graphic novel even further for audiences.
What was your inspiration for SIX?
I always liked the men-on-a-mission, searching-for-redemption films of my youth that got me stoked to be a writer. I’m talking about pictures like The Dirty Dozen and The Wild Bunch. Also, many of my recent novels and some of my TV projects involved soldiers and Marines returning from a war to a country they no longer feel comfortable in or understand, so I had a lot of research in my hip pocket. It’s a classic noir-adventure set-up, and I’d been thinking of it for a long while. But it never seemed to work for me as a straight novel. When this opportunity came along, it was a chance for me to tell my story in a new and more appropriate format.
What do you hope audiences take away from the experience of reading SIX?
I hope audiences take away energy and entertainment delivered in an exciting, intelligent package from SIX.
What has it been like working with 451 so far?
Working with 451 Media has been great. Writers generally don’t like to get notes, but my interaction with the executives at 451 has been pleasant and productive. Everyone I worked with made SIX better and I can’t wait to check out the finished product.
451 Interactive Publishing premiered a slate of graphic novels that merge premium content from printed graphic novels with digital video at this year’s New York Comic Con. Through the use of Touchcode Technology from T+ink, readers of 451’s graphic novels can use their smart phone to unlock content. 451 Media Group, which owns 451 Interactive, was co-founded by filmmaker Michael Bay, along with Anthony Gentile, John Gentile and Douglas Nunes.
Check out a promotional motion design piece for 451 Interactive, below.