Debuting at his first comic convention, Mark Mallouk the co-writer of Black Mass, presented his latest work for Michael Bay’s 451 Media, with his comic Sunflower.
“I wanted to write something with a female lead, where the women didn’t need to be rescued by the man and wasn’t crying about whether a man liked her or not. So that’s the seed for Sunflower,” said Mallouk.
Sunflower focuses on a mother, CJ, looking for her daughter Sunflower who she believes has been killed. CJ finds out Sunflower is alive and seeks out the man who she believes kidnapped her, Rush Bridge, a commune leader in the desert.
“She comes to find that yes her daughter is alive but, her daughter doesn’t recognize her and her daughter has become the most violent member of the commune, so the leader of and the most violent and dangerous person. So it’s CJ the mother, joining the commune and doing what she can, to get closer and closer to Sunflower her daughter, doing more and more terrible things, to earn her daughter back,” said Mallouk.
Mallouk talked about what it was like translating his skill set to a comic book.
“I would turn it in screenplay form to those guys and what kept coming back, when I started seeing the visuals and how Lee was doing the art and interpreting everything, I thought, I started seeing it in a different way and what it could be. So I sorta slowed down on it and paid more attention, I wanted to take advantage of the graphic novel form and not just throw my script at it,” said Mallouk.
The screenwriter also spoke about the differences between working with a comic team compared to a big studio, explaining how studios can sometimes get in the way of the creative process.
“Lee, the artist, Andy who adapted it, we all want the same thing. When those guys come back with a suggestion, I know it’s only for the benefit of the graphic novel,” said Mallouk
Besides talking about Sunflower, Mallouk also expressed his excitement about the comic book industry, the buzz of New York Comic Con, a future project he has on his mind, as well advice for young writers looking to break into the business.
You can listen to the complete Mark Mallouk interview below.
SUNFLOWER #1 (OF 6)
Publisher: 451 MEDIA GROUP
(W) Mark Mallouk, Andi Ewington (A/CA) Lee Carter
Ten years ago CJ’s husband and nine-year-old daughter were murdered off a desert highway near the California/Arizona border. Since that day, CJ can feel only two things – paralyzing shame for not being with her family and quiet fury that the perpetrators were never found. CJ should have been there to defend her family. CJ should have been there to die with her family. And, in the decade since, she might as well have been dead. Until the day a letter arrives. There’s no return address, only one word in the letter. It simply reads: Sunflower. CJ’s daughter is alive. And now so is CJ. And she will stop at nothing to get her daughter back.
Sunflower will be in your local comic book store on October 21.