Donny Cates takes us to the end of the line, a future where Thanos has finally won!

When writer Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw took over the Mad Titan’s solo adventures in THANOS #13, they came out of the gate guns blazing! With their new arc “Thanos Wins,” Thanos is whisked away to the future by a mysterious new character called The Rider, a cosmic baddie who very closely resembles a certain other flame headed denizen of Mephisto. But when Thanos arrives to this future, he meets The Rider’s boss, a future version of himself!

We caught up with Donny to talk about the future and getting so deep into Thanos’ head it gave him literal nightmares.

Marvel.com: Once you found out you would be taking over this solo title, what was your entry point into Thanos’ psyche?

Donny Cates: I’ve been a huge fan of the cosmic side of Marvel since I was a very young lad and Thanos, in particular, has always been one of my favorite characters. There’s really no way that Jordan White, our editor, could have known that! He’s such a complicated character, even though he’s sometimes written off as being one note. As far as getting into the character, you know how every Marvel book, on the title page, has that little blurb describing who the main character is? For Spider-Man, it always says, “Peter Parker was bitten by a radioactive spider, blah blah blah,” right? Well, for any of the THANOS solo issues, it just says, “A total obsession with power drives him to control the forces of the universe.”

He’s had different seats of power. He’s been a ruler, a despot. But at the end of the day, what does he really want? And what happens when he finally gets it? That’s what everything bloomed out of, reading that one sentence description of him and saying let’s just do it! Let’s just finish that sentence that begins every Thanos issue. Let’s give it to him and see what happens then.

Marvel.com: The premise of ‘Thanos Wins’ is wrapped up in time travel and the future inevitability of the Mad Titan finally getting what he wants. How in depth into his victory do you plan to go and how is seeing this potential future going to change Thanos?

Donny Cates: We’re going to get way into it, man! Every single issue in the arc flashes back and forward and moves around in time a lot. As the series goes along, you will get a complete picture of how Thanos came to be where he is at the end of issue #13, where we see him clothed in immense power, with his companion and right hand man, The Rider, seemingly the only thing left alive. That’s not something we’re doing as a cheap, one page gag. That’s the whole series. Really getting to the bottom of how Thanos goes from destroying the Chitauri at the beginning of issue #13, to what we call King Thanos, will be spelled out in great detail in the next few issues.

THANOS #14 has a lot and it is unbelievable. You know, I write these issues and I turn them in, get some notes and then when the art comes back with the words and colors and everything, I get to re-read them again months later. Every single time a new issue comes in, I read it and think, “They’re really letting me do that? They’re going to let me get away with this?” I’m consistently blown away with just how out there and crazy we’re going.

It’s a huge credit to Jordan White, who believed in this and got behind it to say this is what a Thanos book should be. Every issue should just be as hard as it can be.

Marvel.com: What can you tell us about Thanos’ future Ghost Rider friend? What was the genesis of that idea?

Donny Cates: The Rider, as a character, is one of those back pocket ideas I think every writer who wants to someday write for a big comics publisher has. Something you fill up a notebook with, or, if you’re like me, use the notes app on your phone and just fill it to the brim with crazy stuff. The Rider, his origins, and who he really is has been in my back pocket for years. I actually spoke with an editor at Marvel back in 2013 or 2014 at New York Comic-Con and he asked what I’d want to do at Marvel. I told him about The Rider, this cosmic Ghost Rider, and I told him who he really is and how I’d reveal it. I remember that editor saying that’s insane, the craziest thing he’d ever heard. So, it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.

He became a natural fit for this story. I knew we wanted Young Thanos, well young comparatively speaking to King Thanos, to be ripped from time and taken to meet his future self. When I was working on the pitch, I tried to figure out who could fill that role and realized The Rider was a perfect fit! Then, when I started writing him, how he speaks and how he sounds formed this little balancing point to how overly somber Thanos as a character can be. The two vibrate with each other in a way I really enjoyed. He’s the rare character who can actually call Thanos out on how much of a bummer he is, especially when he’s with both Thanoses.

For anyone who has theories about who The Rider is, I would like to hear them. It’s the big reveal at the end of this arc. So, anyone who wants to comment on Twitter or put their theories in, I won’t confirm or deny anything, but please tag it as #WhoIsTheRider and let me know what you think!

Marvel.com: What’s your process like with artist Geoff Shaw? Since you two have a rapport, does that make creating the book easier?

Donny Cates: I’ve been on THANOS longer than STRANGE, so coming onto my first big Marvel book with Geoff, there is the most supportive feeling, the most comfortable feeling. I know how to write for him and he knows how to draw for me. He really knows how to pull certain stuff out of my scripts. We’ve been working together for five years now, starting with “Buzzkill” back in the day. Over the years, just by virtue of working so closely, we’ve come best friends. Going into something where Marvel gives you the keys to the kingdom and lets you play with all the toys, getting into that with your best friend, who is also this phenomenal talent, is surreal and I couldn’t ask for a better collaborator.

With some artists, you’re not able to build the same rapport or talk to them regularly, because you’ve just been thrown together or they’re in Argentina or something, but Geoff and I talk all the time. That’s the essence of comics to me, is getting on the phone or in the same room and just hashing it out. The same goes for Antonio Fabela, our colorist. Geoff and I had never worked with him before but were excited to see what he could do. It felt like he walked right onto the team, read the room and could match the insanity we were throwing down. Letterer Clayton Cowles, too! He’s added so much, differentiating Thanos and King Thanos in speech bubbles. It’s like we’re all jamming on the same frequency.

Marvel.com: You’ve said that writing Thanos has been a scary experience. What’s the darkest place getting into his head has taken your own mind?

Donny Cates: I had said in a previous interview that I had nightmares about Thanos when I first started writing the book. I think most people thought I was exaggerating or joking, but I was not. I tend to get really obsessive about a character when I first start on a book. I don’t stay that way. My wife makes fun of me all the time for it. On THANOS, I was deep in it—unconsciously changing the way I spoke, or sitting in chairs the way Thanos might sit. I was in a dark place and had a nightmare where I was being chased by Thanos through a desert landscape. I could only hear his footsteps, feel the ground shake and sense his breathing. One of those dreams where you try to run and you can’t. It was really scary!

I woke up covered in sweat and I’m not a person who has nightmares. I think that people, as they read this first arc, anyone who thought I was kidding about that or made fun of me for it is going to see what I’m talking about. This book is brutal and intense. 

Catch the next chapter of “Thanos Wins” in THANOS #14, from Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw, on December 27!

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In theaters May 4.

There was an idea…

The first official trailer for Marvel Studios’ “Avengers: Infinity War” has finally arrived. We began our Marvel Cinematic Universe journey together back in 2008. All roads lead to Thanos next year. Get your first official look at “Avengers: Infinity War” right here on Marvel.com above.

Following the events of “Captain America: Civil War,” the Avengers as we know it no longer exists. Lines were drawn; sides were chosen. The Avengers is nothing more than a team name without any team members. Can Earth’s Mightiest Heroes put aside their differences and unite once more? Do they even stand a chance against the Mad Titan who delights in their failure and desperation? Can they stop his thirst for power and chaos as he begins to collect the Infinity Stones?

The trailer packs as many super heroes as it can in a mere 2 minutes and 30 seconds: Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Captain America (Chris Evans), Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), the Vision (Paul Bettany), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Spider-Man (Tom Holland), Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Loki (Tom Hiddleston), Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), and so much more.

“You can fight it. You can run from it. But destiny still arrives.” We know the trailer brought a smile to your face as much as pain and suffering put one on Thanos’ face. Now excuse us while we watch the trailer a thousand more times!

See the culmination of the last decade of the Marvel Cinematic Universe when “Avengers: Infinity War” opens in theaters on May 4, 2018. Stay tuned to Marvel.com, follow @Avengers on Twitter, and Like “The Avengers” on Facebook for the latest on the Avengers and the rest of the MCU as it develops!

 

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Artist Geoff Shaw promises a Marvel Universe like you’ve never seen!

Every villain in history has wanted something. That ultimate goal or triumph that the heroes we know and love tend to get in the way of. But what happens if one of them wins? That’s the story that the new THANOS creative team of writer Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw will explore this fall. The duo threatens to do what no one else ever has: let the Mad Titan achieve ultimate victory! However, to see what happens when the Death-obsessed warrior does next you’ll have to check out the new run starting with THANOS #13 on November 22.

We talked with Shaw about working with longtime friend Cates, rooting for the bad guy, and offering up sights previously unseen!

Marvel.com: How does it feel to begin your Marvel art career drawing one of the most dangerous villains in the universe?

Geoff Shaw: It’s unbelievable! Marvel has always been my dream job, and to start things off with their flagship villain is a surreal honor. I may need to be pinched.

Marvel.com: As an artist, what is it about Thanos as a character that intrigues you?

Geoff Shaw: There’s something really exciting and challenging about drawing a villain over say, a super hero. On the one hand, you want to root for him; after all, I think everyone has fantasized about being the bad guy. As an artist, you really get to act out these characters to bring them to life, so it’s been fun to jump into his boots.

At the same time he’s the main character, and in a weird way you need to identify with and root for him, and there I think there is a depth to him that is endearing, albeit very disturbing.

Marvel.com: With a character as powerful as Thanos, is it difficult coming up with designs for characters or elements that will actually challenge and threaten him?

Geoff Shaw: Threatening for Thanos? That’s a very short to-do list! [This story] is called “Thanos Triumphant” after all.

Marvel.com: You and Donny have worked together a number of times. How has your collaborative relationship evolved in that time?

Geoff Shaw: Aside from [Donny] being one of my best friends, creatively we share a very similar sensibility for storytelling and a strong love for character. Between the script and page, the process is very fluid. I’ve always loved Donny’s writing and he really trusts my eye for the page. That creative comfort has only grown over time. Also, I think we both really love and believe in the stories we tell, so that makes all the difference.

Marvel.com: It looks like THANOS will deal with a lot of darkness both in color and tone. How is it dealing with all that on the page?

Geoff Shaw: A terrifying blast! Thanos does bring with him a darkness that we dive head first into. It’s flat out brutal! That said, there is a surprising amount of fun here too.

We take Thanos to some insane places—places I never thought in a million years I would see, let alone get to draw! This is the Marvel Universe after all, but it’s like you’ve never seen it before.

Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw explore the Mad Titan’s victory march starting with THANOS #13 on November 22.

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New series writer Donny Cates dives into Marvel Legacy!

On November 22, the bad guy wins.

Marvel Legacy gets a taste of unrepentant villainy as the Mad Titan consolidates his power and threatens the Marvel Universe like never before in THANOS #13!

A dynamo new creative duo—writer Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw—take over the book, which kicks off with an arc ominously titled “Thanos Wins.” And when Thanos wins, a lot of other people lose…

We spoke with Donny to get a clearer picture of the coming threat.

Marvel.com: We know that Thanos has an obsession with Death—but other than a fascination with the macabre, what makes the Mad Titan tick?

Donny Cates: Well, that’s something that we’ll be really diving into in this first arc. I’ve said in past interviews that I oddly (and perhaps worryingly) relate to the Mad Titan. And I think it comes down to his insane drive. I can relate to that (I’m writing like eight books right now) in a very real way. This idea that no matter how high Thanos climbs, it will never be enough for him. He’s searching for something he will never find. I think there’s something quite pretty about that.

In an evil murderous way, of course.

Marvel.com: How would Thanos describe his own legacy?

Donny Cates: Thanos has a very singular drive, right? He just wants her. So I don’t know that he necessarily thinks about how he’ll be remembered, you know? In his ideal world, everyone else is dead. So I think Thanos spends little time fretting over his legacy.

Marvel.com: The words “Thanos Wins” can’t be good for everyone. What will those two words mean for the Marvel Universe?

Donny Cates: I’ll say this: as bad as you think it might be for your favorite characters, you can’t imagine how horrific it’s really going to be. This isn’t a very nice book. I mean, its super fun…but yeah, don’t read it late at night. It has been by far the most brutal thing I’ve ever written. It gave me nightmares.

Marvel.com: Will Thanos be he making any allies to achieve his goals?

Donny Cates: There will be one ally that I think people will get a kick out of. He’s this cosmic lunatic with a flaming skull and a super rad space motorcycle. He’s my favorite character of all time. He’s very…mysterious. I look forward to people trying to figure out who he really is.

I can’t wait for this book to actually come out so I can answer your questions honestly! [Laughs] This book has been so much fun, and it’s my favorite thing I’ve ever written, and I want to talk about it so bad, but, alas…

Marvel.com: Last question: would you describe Thanos as misunderstood or just totally insane?

Donny Cates: Yes.

Join Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw for THANOS #13 on November 22!

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Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw plot a Marvel Legacy course for destruction!

What happens when Thanos wins?

Prepare to find out when writer Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw, the critically acclaimed team behind the series God Country, answer that question with a story set to rock the Universe. On November 22, the Mad Titan leaps into the Marvel Legacy era with THANOS #13!

We caught up with Donny to hear what he has in store for the cosmic conqueror.

Marvel.com: How did your involvement in THANOS come about? What attracted you to writing this book?

Donny Cates: Editor extraordinaire Jordan D. White called me and asked if I’d like to write the book! I believe he and [Editor-in-Chief] Axel Alonso enjoyed my previous work with Geoff, which led to both of us being approached for the project.

As for what attracted me to the book, I have always been such a huge fan of Marvel cosmic stories—and of Thanos especially. It’s funny because I don’t think Jordan knew that when he asked if I wanted to join the project. But I have to admit that when I got that call, I nearly cried when he told me which book I’d be working on. It really is such a dream come true to work with the Mad Titan. I’m a kid in a candy store on this project.

Marvel.com: Thanos has a big fan base despite being a “bad guy.” What do you think makes him so appealing to readers?

Donny Cates: I think Thanos’ goals are so clear, understandable—and disturbingly relatable! That being said, everyone likes a bad guy, and everyone can be attracted to a bad guy whose goals are as…cosmically abstract as Thanos’ are. He’s a curious beast, because what he wants—his biggest goals in life—are so horrific and cruel, but ultimately he does everything out of love. It’s just fascinating to watch. He’s endlessly layered and complex, but at the same time he’s straightforward and brutal.

Marvel.com: How did you and Geoff Shaw first meetand what’s it like working in the Marvel Universe with him?

Donny Cates: Geoff and I actually met back in art school at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Geoff was this phenom artist and just an amazing guy, and I knew even back then that he was going to be something special; someone important. I wanted to work with him from the first moment I saw his work, and first got my chance with a book we did called Buzzkill. Since then, we’ve done three books together, and over the years we’ve become really close friends. I am honored to have him at my side on our first big adventure into the Marvel cosmos. It’s so comforting knowing that he’s here. I love that Shaw fella!

Marvel.com: What do the two of you have planned for the Mad Titan?

Donny Cates: We have some pretty insane plans! When I first turned in my outline for the book, I was certain Marvel was going to make me tame it down or alter it—just because of the massive scope of everything. I put in all of the characters and big moments that I’ve always wanted to play with. I turned my synopsis in, and to my utter shock—and joy—all these insane things were approved.

We really went big with the Thanos Wins arc—and the subsequent arcs that follow it. It’s really so much fun. Going big is the only way to deal with Thanos. Go big or go home.

Marvel.com: The previous THANOS series featured several regular supporting characters that constituted a “family,” including Nebula, Starfox, and Thane. Which supporting characters might we see in your book?

Donny Cates: I really can’t comment on this one actually, as a huge part of this upcoming arc depends on some rather shocking supporting characters. Rest assured, however, that as a massive Thanos fan myself, I want to get my hands on all of his supporting cast at some point. That being said, keep your eyes peeled for some great new characters as well. That’s been the best part of all of this for me—getting to add to this incredible cosmic cast. I think people are going to have a great time with this book. I know I am!

THANOS #13, by Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw, drops on November 22!

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See how a battle with Thanos over his son irrevocably changes the Inhumans forever!

Bred by an alien race to be a warrior caste and possessing alien DNA, the Inhumans exist as humans possessed of incredible and otherworldly powers when exposed to the substance known as Terrigen. Living secretly, for the most part, among their fellow man, the Inhumans forge their own destiny as a separate society. Dig into the history of the Inhumans with these Marvel Unlimited comics in preparation for “Marvel’s Inhumans” heading to IMAX and ABC this fall!

After putting his spin on the Fantastic Four, Jonathan Hickman set his sights on the Avengers and the whole Marvel Universe beyond that. He started weaving an epic story that ultimately ended with SECRET WARS, but began in the pages of NEW AVENGERS and THE AVENGERS. Smack dab in the middle, he threatened the entire planet with one angry god: Thanos!

INFINITY ran through both Avengers books as well as its own six issue, self-titled limited series and dealt with Thanos, his Black Order and their dastardly plans. While many of the Avengers headed into outer space to fight one front, Iron Man, Mr. Fantastic, Namor, Dr. Strange, Black Panther and others remained on Earth where the Black Order struck on Thanos’ orders.

One of Thanos’ Outriders snuck into Attilan and read Black Bolt’s mind, revealing that he and the other members of the Illuminati once held the Infinity Gems. Meanwhile, Maximus worked on finding a dimension so the king could converse and also a Terrigen Bomb, both at Blackagar’s request.

Thanos then sent Corvus Glaive to request that the Inhumans kill all of their own between the ages of 16 and 22. It didn’t take long for Black Bolt to realize that this covered the Mad Titan’s true intention, to find his long-lost son, Thane!

Black Bolt then sent the Inhumans away and met with Thanos alone on Attilan. Refusing to give quarter, Black Bolt shouted at his opposition and destroyed the city himself, but not his foe. The attack also unleashed the Terrigen Bomb which started changing anyone with Inhuman genes around the world, including Thane who developed some kind of death-granting powers.

Thanos attained the upper hand on Black Bolt, took him to Wakanda’s Necropolis and attached him to a machine to use the king as a weapon. Later, Maximus of all Inhumans actually saved the day with help from Lockjaw to kill the Black Order’s Supergiant.

Having survived the ordeal, Black Bolt and Maximus discussed the future of the Inhumans high in the Himalayas. Well, Maximus did the talking as you can imagine. Anyway, Blackagar’s brother pointed out that the Terrigen Bomb actually marked the creation of a new age for Inhumans. At the very end of the story, they realized that Black Bolt’s power had been greatly reduced and planned on keeping it a secret from everyone else.

THE INHUMAN CONDITION

If you haven’t readINFINITY, you might be wondering why Thanos demanded Thane’s location from Black Bolt when the offspring didn’t actually reside in Attilan. As explained in FANTASTIC FOUR #577 – another Hickman-penned entry – a long ago argument amongst Inhuman royals lead to a split wherein each one left with their own people to populate different areas. Each group developed their own brand of Terrigenesis. The group that wound up in the hidden city of Orollan, but before that encountered Thanos. One of the women returned with the Titan’s spawn growing inside her. Thane turned into an adept healer until his true nature came to the surface when Black Bolt set off the Terrigen Bomb.

Find out what happens after the Terrigent Mist start spreading across the Earth in the INHUMANITY event!

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Thanos stands triumphant at the D23 Expo Marvel Studios booth.

After a full first day of D23 Expo you’d think we couldn’t follow it up with more, but Saturday was even bigger, and much, much, badder as Josh Brolin held court at the Marvel booth.

Fresh off his surprise appearance with the cast “Avengers: Infinity War” at the Disney, Marvel Studios & Lucasfilm- Live Action panel, Josh Brolin met with fans for a signing in front of his children — the Children of Thanos! The maquettes were unveiled for his appearance and fans were excited to get an up close look at Corvus Glaive, Proxima Midnight, Ebony Maw, and Cull Obsidian.

Brolin even had an encounter with a real life Avenger, although this one was considerably shorter and much more adorable.

On the show floor the Disney Consumer Products Pavilion showcased new and exciting home products for fans to live their best Marvel life. On display were backpacks, workout gear, and if you’re worthy enough, a Mjolnir pendant made to compliment the mightiest of outfits. Even the greatest superhero would be exhausted from all that shopping, luckily free coffee was up for grabs adorned with the face of a familiar looking webslinger.

One more day to go! Follow @marvel on twitter to get all the up to date D23 Expo news throughout the weekend! 

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Thanos artist Germán Peralta reveals the God Quarry in exclusive pages!

They say that no one’s ever returned from the God Quarry. Then again, no one like the Mad Titan has descended into the pit before!

To see exactly how this plays out, you’ll have to pick up THANOS #9 on July 26. The story, by writer Jeff Lemire and artist Germán Peralta, marks the duo’s third issue together on the title, but they seem to be hitting it off quite well as they continue to chronicle their protagonist’s solo adventures in space.

We talked with Peralta about capturing the complexity of his title character, working with Lemire, and building the God Quarry!

Marvel.com: Given Thanos’ status as a cosmic level villain, do you approach him any differently than you might a more straight-forward hero?

Germán Peralta: Thanos is one of my favorite characters in the Marvel Universe. I drew a lot of fan art about him. I like his aesthetic as much as his personality. When I found out I was going to draw him, I started to imagine how to put my “touch” on him without leaving aside the great work Mike Deodato did in the previous issues.

The approach I use to draw a villain of these characteristics is very different from a super hero. I can play a lot with his expressions without the fear of making him look funny or grotesque, either with his face or his body language. In fact, I’ve always been more interested in the villains. I believe they’re the ones who make a hero, heroic. In this case, Jeff Lemire did excellent work with Thanos’ personality, giving him a different twist to his character, but never losing sight of who he really is. Having the chance to be a part of this character’s story is a real pleasure.

Marvel.com: Thanos is such a complicated figure. From a physicality perspective, what are the key elements that really define him?

Germán Peralta: I think that the thing that makes the Mad Titan interesting is the dichotomy between his hunger for power and the emptiness inside him. It’s like he always wanted to fill that emptiness with power but it’s never enough. It’s interesting how inside him coexists the madness and the calmness, the furious strength with the absolute intelligence. He could have everything but he always wants more and he never gets it00but he’ll destroy everything in its way to get it.

Marvel.com: This issue finds Thanos heading into the God Quarry, what can you tell us about that very intriguing location?

Germán Peralta: I really enjoyed that conclusion when I read the script. This is a place of desolation, where it doesn’t matter how powerful you are, you have absolutely no chance against the power who reigns there. It doesn’t matter your size, your strength, how important you are in the history of the universe, you’re going to feel like a scared puppy in there, surrounded by those colossi who couldn’t do anything to save themselves from being trapped between those walls and from that pit.

Marvel.com: What was the design process like for the God Quarry?

Germán Peralta: I knew this was going to be an important place in the next issues but I also imagined this was an important place for Jeff too, since he created it in his mind and I didn’t want to ruin that. I consider it really important to work alongside the writer because every page is created by both of us. And the fact of knowing what Jeff had in his mind when he imagined this scenario was as important to me as what I had at the moment of doing the sketches.

Luckily, we both had a similar image in our minds; I based my design on a mine pit but without the necessary levels to go back up. It’s a hole with unknown depth because the only thing you can see are more and more petrified bodies. It was very important for me to emphasize the lack of hope against this power; that the ones who fell there, even Thanos, think, “What do I have that they didn’t to not finish as they finished?” There are some references to see the magnitude of the beings who are, or rather who were, really powerful.

Marvel.com: How has it been working with Jeff on this series so far? Since he’s an artist as well, does that change how you two might discuss a scene?

Germán Peralta: I can’t complain about the writers I [have] worked with. Jeff is a great writer and also a great artist. Saying that, he’s someone who could say something in the creative process or about the designs every time, however he gives me a lot freedom when I draw. Everything is clear in his scripts, it’s all there, but even then, he is open if I make some changes. I believe that mutual trust between the writer and the artist is essential to make a better project.

Enter the God Quarry along with the Mad Titan, Jeff Lemire, and Germán Peralta on July 26 when THANOS #9 debuts!

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Thanos comes face-to-face with his legendary creator!

Sideshow, who are famous for their high-end, luxury pop culture statues, memorabilia, and collectibles, have unveiled an all-new interpretation of Thanos.

Recently, following the red carpet premiere of “Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy” in Los Angeles, Sideshow’s creative team were able to share their vision of The Mad Titan with comic-book legend and Thanos creator Jim Starlin!


Jim spent a day at Sideshow HQ, hanging out with the creative team, poring through the countless concept designs and sketches, and checking out the final prototype of Thanos on his throne.

Sideshow’s Art Director, David Igo, said: “The Thanos on Throne Maquette was a labor of love that went through years of design and development. We aimed to give our fellow collectors ‘an ultimate Thanos,’ combining aspects of all of our favorite iterations of the character as he appeared in paintings, comic books, movies and more–and it looks like Jim likes him as much as we do!”

Sideshow Sculptor Will Harbottle added: “[His gesture is] an homage to the cover of INFINITY GAUNTLET #4. It’s one of my favorite moments in all of comic book history. He’s on the cover, floating in space and he’s saying, ‘Come and get me’! We wanted to reference that awesome moment.”

When asked about his first impression of Sideshow’s huge new Maquette, and that hand gesture in particular, Jim said “The first thing I saw was this finger, beckoning, and I went ‘They got it right!'”

He added: “It’s just a gorgeous looking piece of work entirely. Currently, I think this new statue [is] my favorite.”

David Igo added: “Jim is a constant source of inspiration to us, and it was our pleasure and privilege to share this moment with him. The whole experience has been a dream come true, and we’re incredibly proud to be able to work with Marvel, and to explore this amazing character.”

The Thanos on Throne Maquette was met with praise from critics and fans alike, and the super limited edition Sideshow exclusive variant sculpt–with a second, grinning portrait–sold out in minutes!

But don’t despair, a Collector Edition of the Thanos on Throne Maquette is available for pre-order now!

For a more detailed behind the scenes look at Sideshow’s Thanos on Throne Maquette, check out this behind the scenes video:

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How the new GraphicAudio production about the Mad Titan came to life!

In his quest for omnipotence of the Infinity Gems, Thanos has been defeated again by a group of heroes intent on stopping him at all costs. Stripped of his powers and granted one final chance by his only love, Mistress Death, the Mad Titan sets out once more to assert his strength and influence across the Multiverse…

Witness the story of “Thanos: Death Sentence” by Stuart Moore, in ways you’ve never seen—or heard—before: available today, March 15, as an epic GraphicAudio production! Immerse yourself in the voices, sound effects, and music that bring this tale to life. For a special sampling of the audiobook, check out a scene from GraphicAudio now!

To learn more about “Thanos: Death Sentence,” we spoke to Marvel editors Sarah Brunstad and Jeff Youngquist, GraphicAudio Vice President Anji Cornette, and GraphicAudio Director Scott McCormick about the process of transforming the novel into a cinematic audio production.

Marvel.com: So, Sarah and Jeff, as editors at Marvel, how does a project like this start? We’ve rarely seen such an in-depth story about Thanos, so what made you want to explore the legendary Mad Titan this way?

Sarah Brunstad and Jeff Youngquist: In our prose line, we’re trying to appeal to dyed-in-the-wool fans as always, but we’re also looking for something that’s going to bring in the unfamiliar reader—someone who maybe knows a character from film, or TV, or has read a comic or two and just doesn’t know where to go from there. So with the success of “Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy” film and all the buzz about this super powerful cosmic string-puller, we knew it was the right time for a Thanos novel.

We’d put out a Guardians novel by Dan Abnett in 2014, and had been lucky enough to snag up-and-coming author Corinne Duyvis to write a new Guardians novel to coincide with “Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” film release. But we felt Thanos was a separate story—he needed room to develop on his own. He’s been around since 1973 and his history goes so much deeper than the Guardians team we’re familiar with. And one of the joys of writing—and editing!—prose is the intimacy of the story you can tell; this was an opportunity to really dig into a character whose motivations are often so abstract that they go beyond any conventional definition of “good and evil.” Thanos is so much more than “villain” or “hero,” and that makes for great story fodder.

Marvel.com: What made Stuart Moore the perfect choice to write this novel? What’s it like to work with Stuart?

Sarah Brunstad and Jeff Youngquist: Stuart has been working with us for a long time. He actually wrote our very first prose novel, “Marvel: Civil War”—an adaptation of the historic 2006 event—and he was the primary editor on several subsequent projects. It doesn’t hurt that the man knows comics inside and out; he’s been writing and editing comics for over 20 years. So there are a million reasons why he came to mind; in fact, he was almost too busy to write the book! But, lucky for us, he couldn’t resist the lure of the character. So he sent us a pitch, which we immediately loved, and from there, it was full steam ahead.

Stuart’s a consummate professional—a breeze to work with. So we knew from the get-go that we could trust him to tell an epic story. And man, does he—right from the start. The opening recalls all the best “hero vs. villain” moments from the classic INFINITY GAUNTLET storyline, but reimagines that DNA in a signature way. This is Thanos at the height of his power, larger than life—literally!

Marvel.com: What are the advantages—and challenges—of creating a prose novel versus a more traditional comic?

Sarah Brunstad and Jeff Youngquist: The biggest challenge is probably time. When you’re used to writing or editing 20-page single issues, staring down the barrel of 70,000 words is pretty daunting—and you only have about six months to do it. On the other hand, you have a lot more room to develop the story and put the pieces together. With comics, you’re writing one issue at a time, and sometimes you don’t recognize a story problem until it’s being drawn and the next script is due. Telling a Thanos story in prose really allowed us to dive into the character and use a close point of view to combine the epic scope you expect from a Marvel cosmic story with deep emotional moments that delve into Thanos’ whole oeuvre—the reasons for everything he is and does.

Marvel.com: So, now that the book’s written and is ready to enter the audio medium, what happens next? Anji, as Vice President of GraphicAudio, and Scott, as Audio Director, what about this novel made you want to pursue this project? What inspired you about this story?

Anji Cornette: Our listeners love to hear us produce Marvel stories in GraphicAudio® A Movie in Your Mind®. We have close to two dozen Marvel titles based on prose novels and a few directly from graphic novels. We were really excited to hear Stuart Moore was writing “Thanos: Death Sentence”; Stuart is also the author of the prose novel “Marvel: Civil War,” which is one of our most popular Marvel titles. We realized that this was going to be an awesome opportunity to get to learn more about one of the biggest baddies in the Marvel Universe.

Scott McCormick: There are very few opportunities to explore the story from the point of view of the villain, which makes “Thanos: Death Sentence” such an exciting opportunity.

Thanos was rejected by his mother and family, viewed as an abomination from the time of his birth and the one person he loves, Death, won’t even speak to him. In another life and in another world, Thanos would have turned into a poet; instead he murders billions.

There is a fascination that many of us have for evil. A need to understand where it comes from, perhaps in the hopes of being able to stop it in the future. Hoping that if someone like Thanos can find happiness, perhaps it is possible for anyone.

Marvel.com: How long did this project take to complete? How many people work on this kind of production altogether?

Anji Cornette: It takes approximately six to eight months for this type of project from start to finish. Each of our productions are slightly different, so it varies depending on the project. In this case, Scott was also the Script Adapter, and he worked closely with our Sound Designer Justin Wortz. Then Scott cast the script with voice actors—sometimes there are casts of over 50 actors and sometimes there are casts of 10 or 20. The cast for “Thanos: Death Sentence” includes 41 voice actors.

Marvel.com: So, Scott, how do you cast 41 actors for this story? What were you looking for in the voices of Thanos and the other main characters?

Scott McCormick: Outside of New York or L.A., Washington D.C. [where GraphicAudio is based] has one of the richest, most talented actor pools in the country. When folks find out that we are playing super heroes and villains over here, we have no shortage of performers beating down our door to audition.

Once we have worked with an actor on several projects—we also produce westerns, sci-fi, fantasy, and horror titles—we begin to know their strengths as a performer and know where they would best serve the story we are telling.

In the case of Christopher Walker, who plays Thanos in our story, we needed an actor who would be able to play Thanos in the various incarnations in which we see him throughout Stuart Moore’s story. A combination of vocal effects and Chris’ own vocal talent allow him to play the imposing, God-like Thanos, and Chris’ natural voice allows him to play the other facets of Thanos along his journey.

I am excited to be using some new voices in the book, as well as having the return of some old Marvel Universe friends, including Richard Cutting as Tony Stark and Eric Messner as Rocket Raccoon.

Marvel.com: What’s it like directing voice actors in this kind of story?

Scott McCormick: Our actors come ready to play. As a Director, I need [to] come ready knowing what I want and be able to convey that to them in as simple a manner as possible.

Usually, I will let the actor give me a read on the line, then give them any adjustments that I might need either for timing with another actor, or sound effect, or to help clarify meaning or intent. Most of the time, the actors will nail the line in the first take, but they are willing to give me an alternative take and surprise me, which can take me in a direction which I wasn’t expecting. These “aha moments” keep you on your toes and remind you that you don’t know everything.

Marvel.com: The final product is an epic, almost cinematic adventure. How do you harmonize all the different audio elements that go into a production like this? What’s the secret for turning words on a page into this huge, immersive experience?

Scott McCormick: The easy answer is movie magic. Seriously, if you have ever seen a behind-the-scenes “making of” documentary of a big budget Hollywood film, you know that there are Sound Designers, Sound Mixers, and Foley Artists all working with the Director to create the soundscape to support the visuals of the film. If you watch the credits of a film like “Captain America: The First Avenger,” this list can run into the hundreds. Our detailed script adaptation, direction, brilliant performances, and talented sound designers creating rich soundscapes—including sound effects and music—is what makes it a GraphicAudio® A Movie in Your Mind®.

As [Script] Adapter and Director, I turn the book into a script, which serves as a score for the engineer. Not only does the script contain lines of dialogue, but also cues for sound effects, musical suggestions, and timing for the sound designer. Changing what would otherwise be a boring single narrator audiobook into a cinematic GraphicAudio book experience.

Anji Cornette: We don’t want these prose novels to be your grandfather’s “read-to-me” [audiobooks]. These titles deserve more attention and our goal is to bring these words to life in a full blown audio entertainment production where the listener feels like they have been transported to the middle of the action.

Available today, March 15, the GraphicAudio production of “Thanos: Death Sentence” can be purchased in comic shops or ordered directly at www.GraphicAudio.net/Marvel!

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