Comic artist Dan Parent, who was recently in India for the seventh edition of Delhi Comic Con, believes comic adaptations of films in Hollywood is a sure shot success mantra.
In an interview to thestatesman.com, Dan tells about his inspiration behind writing several volumes of Archies, why he prefers Veronica over Betty and why comic adaptations are a sure shot success for films at the box office .
What are you looking forward to this year’s Delhi Comic Con?
This is my first visit in Delhi. I have been to Bengaluru in the past but not here. I have not been on the grounds because of the busy schedule but I can feel it’s going to be a great show. I’m looking forward to cosplays as I have heard about Indian cosplays a lot. Hopefully, I see some Riverdale cosplays.
At what point of time did you decide that you want to be comic artist?
Some 30 years ago! I had graduated art school at that time. Upon graduating I started working for Archies. I didn’t start as a writer at that time, I was just doing drawing for them. But they liked my work and hired me. And a after a couple of years I switched to writing. Ever since that I have been doing that and I’m grateful that I decided to go for comic writing as career option.
So what was your inspiration behind it?
Archies comics. When I started reading the comics and eventually writing for Archies it made me realise that this is what I want to do in my life. Archies has been a very important part of my life.
This Indian edition of your latest Archies comic features every character in traditional Indian dresses, what made you go with that move?
It’s simple, I want the Indian fans to relate with my comics. And what other way to relate it with the fans here by making the characters wear a traditional and ethnic Indian outfit.
You once said that Jughead, a central character in the Archies comics, is asexual. Is that true?
I don’t know if I said that or someone else. But Jughead’s sexuality has been talked again and again. I would like to tell you that it’s not that he is asexual, it’s just that he is a character who loves to live in his own world. He loves to eat, he runs away from girls and loves to hang out with his few best friends. He’s a fun loving character, who is not interested in dating.
It’s also being said that you prefer Veronica over Betty. Why is that?
From an artist and writer’s stand point she is more interesting. Villains are always easier to write for and I’m not saying that she is exactly a villain but she’s complicated. I find writing and drawing Veronica is more entertaining.
Coming to Riverdale, the show has a much darker theme attached to it whereas the comic are much more lighter. Do you think this makeover will make people forget about the comics?
No. I don’t think so. Yes the show is dark as comparison to the comics but the show is entirely based on the comics! The characters are the same, the theme has not changed. And Riverdale has been a huge success among the fans. As a fan, everyone would want to know comic adaptation of the series, the answer is Archies comics. So, I don’t think that would make people forget about the comics rather the show is taking forward the legacy of Archies.
Do you think comic adaptations in films is sure shot success at earning big bucks at the box office?
Absolutely. I think whenever you make a film in Hollywood, which is based on a comic book or graphic novel, It’s kind of guaranteed thing that the film will be successful for sure. Films like Avengers, X-Men, Spiderman has done tremendous business at the box office and shows like Flash and Daredevil are among the most popular superhero series.
So which is your favourite superhero movie in recent years?
I liked Marvel’s Avengers. Wonder Woman was really good. If you go back in time like 10 years, there was this film Ghost World, which was based on an independent comic and I thought it was one of the most true comic adaptation through a film.
If given a chance, would you hesitate to work with an Indian comic writer?
I would love to work with an Indian comic artist. I recognise there is some great talent in India.
So, any advice you want to give to all the aspiring comic writers present here in India?
Um, Keep drawing and writing and be passionate about it. Don’t get demotivated by any shortcomings, If you love comics, just keep doing it.