How Jim Starlin overcame career-ending injury – The Hollywood Reporter


Like a comic book hero who suffers massive defeat before rising to his feet, legendary artist Jim Starlin is back.

The writer and artist, known for creating characters such as Avengers: Endgame villainous Thanos, and guardians of the galaxy the characters Gamora and Drax, had an accident several years ago which made it impossible to draw for more than 15 minutes at a time.

“I made a hole between my thumb and forefinger,” says Starlin Hollywood journalist injuries sustained several years ago in a compressed air explosion. “And so I thought my time as an artist was pretty well over.”

It was a blow to Starlin, who became a superstar artist with Marvel in the 1970s. He continued to exercise while squeezing a ball, but mostly so that he could one day button his own shirt without help. Eventually, he started going to conventions again, with his agent sometimes asking him to try out a few designs. One of them was for artist Jaime Jameson, who begged for a Starlin Doctor Doom. After some harassment, he tried his luck.

“I sat down with a pencil and to my surprise, I was able to do this drawing without my hand contracting,” Starlin explains.

Soon he and Jameson were teaming up to The return of the dread star, a graphic revival of the property Starlin first worked on in the 1980s and which focuses on Vanth Dreadstar, leader of a team of rags that go on missions across the galaxy. Starlin writes and sketches the story, with Jameson inking.

“It was 20 years between the stories, and I decided that the characters themselves had to be 20,” Starlin notes. “Where would they have ended up after all this time?” “

When THR spoke with Starlin in late May, New York-based Starlin was in Los Angeles on business, including trying to adapt Dreadstar for the screen.

“I would love to see a Dreadstar TV series. I’m not looking for a movie deal, ”Starlin says. “It’s a long-term story. It’s not a one-shot or a three-shot. It’s too complicated.”

Last year, Starlin offered a first look at Dreadstar, with a villain inspired by then-President Donald Trump, whom the creator took issue with for a number of reasons, including his campaign using Thanos’ likeness. of Avengers: Endgame. (Starlin confirms that the art did not trigger a Secret Service visit.)

After watching Thanos kill half the universe in Avengers: Infinity War, Starlin can’t wait to see another of her creations onscreen, with Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings arriving Sept. 3 from Marvel Studios. Although he gets along with guardians of the galaxy filmmaker James Gunn, Starlin didn’t get to meet the team behind Shang-Chi, in part because the movie was shot during the COVID-19 era.

“There’s no cameo this time around,” Starlin says of the movie based on the character he co-created in 1973. “I’m going to come in cold like everyone else. to see him.

As for Dreadstar, Starlin and Jameson are already well advanced in the next opus.

Says Starlin, “This next story is about coming to terms with the inevitable, which we’ve all been through over the past year.”

The return of the dread star is available now from Ominous Press.

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