Comics Creative Team for Ukraine Relief Effort Anthology – The Hollywood Reporter

In times of dire need, comic book creators have come together for a greater good, whether it’s famine in Africa with Marvel’s 1980s heroes of hope comics or graphic novels made after the events of September 11, 2001. More recently, Love is love sought to help the victims of the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting. Today, as the Russian invasion of Ukraine enters its seventh week, more than three dozen creators, including many winners Eisner and veteran comic book icons, have come together for a charity book that aims to raise money to help Ukrainian refugees displaced by war.

Title Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seedsthe anthology book is the brainchild of Scott Dunbier, a veteran industry publisher currently at IDW who has partnered with comedy crowdfunding platform Zoop and charity Operation USA for the effort .

“The horrific pictures on the news every night, they just kept getting worse,” Dunbier said of what prompted him to take action. “Every night there was a new atrocity. There was a picture of an unexploded Russian missile and on it was written ‘For the children’. It resonated with me and I had to do something.

He started calling creators he had worked with and asked if they would collaborate on a book. Almost everyone said yes, and now a group of stars are already working on their stories for a 96-page collection that will go to the printer three months after the fundraiser ends. Copies are expected to be sent to funders in November.

Some creators contribute new stories featuring characters and properties they haven’t worked on in decades. Walter Simonson, who took on Marvel Thor to new heights in the 1980s, will have a new Star Slammershis sci-fi property, for the first time since the 1990s. Howard Chaykin writes and draws American flag !his sci-fi political satire for the first time since the late 1980s.

Elsewhere, Kurt Busiek and Brent Anderson have a short story featuring their award-winning track, astro citywhile Chew co-creators John Layman and Rob Guillory will have a new story featuring their tasty FDA agent, Tony Chu.

Louise Simonson and June Brigman, who created Power supply for Marvel, watchmen co-creator Dave Gibbons and Chris Sprouse (tom strong), veteran scribe Mark Waid and Gabriel Rodriguez (locke and key) are among those who create original stories not based on previously created characters. Alex Ross paints the cover of a hardback edition, while softcover options include jackets from Arthur Adams, Dave Johnson and Bill Sienkiewicz, the latter’s cover revealed exclusively here for the first time. Autographed editions, prints and T-shirts will also be offered.

Busiek, who writes the new astro city story, had already donated to relief efforts in Ukraine before receiving Dunbier’s call. “I wish we didn’t have to do this,” Busiek said. The Hollywood Reporter. “It’s appalling. So being able to help out a bit, I’m happy to do that. »

Busiek and Anderson astro city The story, like some of the creators’ stories, won’t necessarily be specific to Ukraine or Russia, but will have themes that echo the humanitarian crisis. AstroCity, comics, told stories of superheroes and supervillains through the perspective of everyday people.

“Our story is not set in Ukraine, but it is about an invasion and efforts to resist that invasion. This is not a superhero story, but a story of people defending their homes,” Busiek noted. “If anything, the situation we see in Ukraine is that there are no heroes coming to their rescue at all. It is the Ukrainians themselves who are fighting. And echoing that, astro cityit won’t be about superheroes coming to save people.

At Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo contribution follows a similar path. Yojimbo is a comic that follows an anthropomorphic rabbit Ronin in medieval Japan, a far cry from the events of today. But the story will feature the character who helps the refugees being driven from their land by a warlord.

Some segments will be more specific to Ukraine. Joshua Dystart reports on Ukrainian artists, while Y: The Last Man artist Pia Guerra and alternative artist Peter Kuper draw political cartoons.

Minus some essential costs such as printing and credit card fees, all profits for Sun-flower seeds will benefit the Ukrainian relief efforts of Operation USA, an organization chosen by Dunbier.

“I wanted to find a charity that was small, had low administrative costs, and did real work,” says Dunbier. “It’s something that has to move quickly. And OpUSA ticked all my boxes.

The fundraising initiative for Sun-flower seeds started earlier this week and turned out to be a surprise hit, becoming fully funded within a day. But the more funds the group raises, the more copies of the book will be printed and the more funds will go to OpUSA. The campaign runs for the next 27 days.

Lisa M. Horner