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Mark Hamill directs The Black Pearl, based on his own comic

05.18.2010

Almost 15 years after it hit comic stores (back when it was easy to find comic stores), STAR WARS saber-swinger Mark Hamill is getting to direct a feature based on his book THE BLACK PEARL.

Hamill, otherwise perhaps best known for voicing the animated Joker (and for being a lifelong hardcore geek), will helm the $7 million production. The movie is set up through London/L.A. company Berkeley Square Films, whose motto is "to go back to the 1970s approach to filmmaking, where the artists have complete creative autonomy while still ensuring that the money actually makes it to the screen rather than into the studio's pockets."

Per Dark Horse Comics site: Hamill describes The Black Pearl as a tale of urban madness; a story about the "tabloidization" of our society, instant celebrity, and responsibility in the media. "Could an out-of-control shock jock compel an unstable man into becoming the mysterious Black Pearl? That's the premise, and I'm thrilled with the results! It's offbeat, unpredictable, and wickedly funny."

Ironically, the project first began life in the 90s (before Captain Jack Sparrow sailed on the title) as a screenplay before getting converted to comic format. Hamill, who made his directing debut on the indie mockumentary COMIC BOOK: THE MOVIE, seems happy working with the reasonable budget: "We started getting interest from some pretty big producers a while ago. But then it started to take on a life of its own where it became this huge mega budget comic book movie. This was the exact opposite of what we wanted to do."

Extra Tidbit: Hamill doesn't discriminate when it comes to the "Big Two" comic publishers -- while predominantly known as a DC Comics guy from Joker (and playing Trickster on "The Flash" TV show), he's also voiced Wolverine in an Xbox game and done villain voices on "Spider-Man" and "Hulk" animated shows.
Source: Variety

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