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Old 07-20-2004, 09:56 AM   #1
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Dark Horse Comics and BMW Films Team Up



Bruce Campbell, Mark Waid, Katushiro Otomo, Kurt Busiek, and other top talent take on bmwfilms' comic noir series
Stories to Debut in August with Matt Wagner's Scandal

Woodcliff Lake, NJ, July 19, 2004... Dark Horse and bmwfilms.com are bringing The Hire-the award-winning action series featuring the enigmatic hero capable of doing the hard thing for the right reasons-to the comics pages, with an original series set to hit retail stores in August.

Just as the short film series The Hire brought energetic and cutting-edge directors like Ang Lee (Oscar and Golden Globe winner "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," "Sense and Sensibility," "Eat Drink Man Woman"), John Frankenheimer ("Ronin," "Grand Prix," "The Manchurian Candidate"), John Woo ("Windtalkers," "Mission Impossible II," "Face/Off"), and Tony Scott ("Spy Game," "Enemy of the State," "True Romance," "Top Gun") among others to the project, Dark Horse is bringing the same innovative spirit to the comic series. Each issue of The Hire will be a stand-alone story by a different top creator or creator team and will focus on the character known only as "The Driver." Teams will include Katushiro Otomo (Akira), Katsuya Terada, (Blood: The Last Vampire) Mark Waid (Kingdom Come), Kurt Busiek (Conan), and more.

The Hire comic series will feature six issues, the first of which will be available in retail comic book outlets on August 11th, with a retail price of $2.99. The first issue of The Hire kicks off with Scandal, a story written and drawn by the legendary Matt Wagner, (Grendel and Mage), where The Driver is asked to sneak a rich man's spoiled, scandalous daughter out of town. He thinks the worst he'll have to deal with are persistent paparazzi, but soon the bullets start to fly.

Following Wagner's first explosive issue, Dark Horse has lined up some more of the leading lights from the world of comics. Future issues will feature the additional talents of: Francisco Ruiz Velasco (Lone Wolf 2100), Karl Kesel (Fantastic Four), Ariel Olivetti (Avengers), and Steven Grant (X-Men).

"I loved the bmw.com film series and when we got a chance to do comics featuring the character from The Hire I just couldn't say no," commented Dark Horse President Mike Richardson. "He's a great throwback to the film noir style anti hero with a heart of gold from the 40's." The talent we have lined up to bring this character to life on the comics page is just outstanding. Fans of the films, and comic fans in general, are in for a real treat!"

Among the top creators on this project is popular cult film actor and author Bruce Campbell (Army of Darkness). Campbell will write a story called "Precious Cargo" with art by Kilian Plunkett.

"First and foremost, it was a pleasure to work with Mike Richardson and Dark Horse. Those guys did a great comic series of Army of Darkness, so I'd always had a lot of respect for their taste as a comic book company," commented Bruce Campbell. "When The Hire came my way, I jumped on it, mainly because I had never written a comic book before and was intrigued by how a short story is converted to such a visual medium."

Campbell continued, "Writing "Precious Cargo" was, by far, one of the trickiest ventures I'd ever wandered into because of its exacting nature, and because I had to think like a director the entire time."

About The Hire film series
The Hire series, which debuted in 2001, revolves around one intriguing central character known as The Driver played by British acting sensation Clive Owen ("The Bourne Identity," "Gosford Park," and "Croupier"). Each film has brought together Hollywood elite -top-name directors combined with remarkable casts including Madonna, James Brown and Gary Oldman. Since The Hire's debut, the award-winning film series has received more than 60 million film views. All eight films are now available in a DVD collection or online at www.bmwfilms.com.
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