Published on September 10th, 2015 | by admin
Mark Millar Chrononauts Interview
Welcome to Impulse Gamer Mark. What gave you the inspiration for such a unique take on a time travel story with CHRONONAUTS?
I loved the idea of treating the exploration of time like we treated the exploration of space. That notion of sending a satellite into the past and beaming back images from our history just kicked the whole thing off for me, the notion of people around the world watching the American Civil War like they watched the moon-landing. From there the story wrote itself and I moved onto the first manned mission.
Did you have any inspirations from other mediums or research?
Mainly the obvious ones, like HG Wells and Bob Gale, but there’s also John Huston’s Man Who Would Be King in there, his adaptation of the Kipling classic. It’s basically the original buddy movie and that notion of two best friends getting in over their heads with an ancient culture was definitely on my mind as I was writing.
Who is your favourite character in CHRONONAUTS and why?
I love both leads. Corbin and Danny are best friends and would do anything for each other. We never really see ultimate friendship without complications in fiction. There’s usually drama within the friendship, but just for a change I kept all the drama external and even while all the worst things you can imagine are going on they never blame the other. It made me like them even more.
Quinn and Danny have a really unique friendship. Does this stem from anything in your real life?
Oh, yeah. Absolutely. I would do anything for my friends. Some of my pals go all the way back to starting school when I was five. You never really quite get rid of me.
What was the most challenging and rewarding aspect about writing CHRONONAUTS?
Doing a comic that was just pure fun. So much of comics is about how dark you can make it, how extreme you can go, so it was actually really nice to go in a different direction. It’s not a comedy of course, but the lightness was fun.
Can you tell us a little about your creative process in creating CHRONONAUTS? (Like how does it go from idea to paper)
I usually just start doodling pictures and build a story from the imagery, at the most basic level, but this started life as a short film I was going to direct for Ridley Scott. The funding fell through and the project lay dormant until I told one of the heads of Universal about it over lunch. He said it would make a great feature, but by this point I was thinking about it as a comic. He said he’d love to buy it, but I was adamant I was going to do the comic first. We’re now making it with Chris Morgan, the guy who repaired the Fast and Furious Franchise and wrote Wanted, the movie adaptation of my book in 2008 starring Angelina Jolie.
Do you believe that time travel will someday be possible?
We travel through time every day, the pace being 60 minutes an hour and only in one direction. At the moment, of course.
If you had the chance, would you travel yourself? If so, where/when would you go and why?
I’m a big conspiracy guy so I’d snap a picture of the guy on the grassy knoll or record what happened in the French tunnel the night Diana was killed, when all the CCTV cameras went off in the tunnel one hour before and every other CCTV camera in Paris was working perfectly. That kind of thing.
How was it working with Sean Gordon Murphy?
A dream. Honestly, a dream. So many artists I’ve worked with are brilliant, but late. Sean is brilliant, but on time and more brilliant than I could ever have imagined. I’m starting the Chrononauts sequel right now and he’s drawing as of Christmas. I can’t wait. It’s the best, least stressful experience I’ve ever had with an artist on a Millarworld book.
What is your favorite comic (that you did not write)?
Easy. The Dark Knight Returns. But you maybe had to be there. I was sixteen and it hit me like a grenade.
What advice would you have for people trying to break into the industry?
Do it. It’s literally the best, most fun job in the world. I treasure every second.
So what does the rest of 2015 hold for you?
Chrononauts trade is out this week, Jupiter’s Circle Volume 1 is out next month and the second volume starts in November when Huck #1 launches. I’ve finished all these books, my new policy writing a year ahead and banking all the art so we never have delays. So weirdly my 2015 is writing up all the Summer 2016 projects, which we’ll start announcing this November.
Any final words for our readers?
I love you and I want to kiss you all!