By Rob LeDonne
The recent Comic Con drew thousands from all over the world; many of them in the entertainment industry who work in publishing, film, television and other fields. Vlad Yudin and Edwin Mejia are two of the countless people who come every year to check out all the festival has to offer and even push their own project.
“It’s a big event, not just for comic books but for entertainment in general,” Yudin explained before the festival from a car in the middle of the New Mexico desert on the way to San Diego. “It’s a great way to learn what’s happening in the world of entertainment and, for me, to introduce new projects.”
This year, Yudin and Mejia hawked a brand new graphic novel called “Head Smash,” a post apocalyptic science fiction thriller which is turning heads — not only in San Diego, but across the world and in Hollywood as well. Mark Morgan and Michael Beckor, the producers of the “Twilight” franchise, optioned the story to turn it into a feature film and Yudin is hard at work on the movie script.
“The story started out as an idea for a new superhero with a cool twist,” Yudin explains concerning the origins of “Head Smash.” “We wanted to create a very relatable superhero with a power that’s also a gift and a curse.”
Yudin and Mejia always knew they wanted to turn “Head Smash” into a feature film, and figured a graphic novel was a great way to drum up interest.
“It made sense for us to turn it into a graphic novel,” Yudin notes. “It’s such a visual piece.”
Last year at Comic Con, they announced their intent to publish the story and since then have been working hard putting together the pieces for its release exactly one year later, this July 31.
“It all took quite some time,” says Yudin, who recruited a variety of the most notable people in the world of art and graphic novels. Among them was Joe Perez, best known as Kanye West’s art director; another artist, Tim Bradstreet, has years of street cred under his belt working on such classic comics as “Blade” and “The Punisher.”
For now, Yudin (who grew up in Russia) and Mejia (who grew up in New York) are both basking in the acclaim that “Head Smash” is garnering by critics across the nation and are hard at work trying to spread the word. Said Yudin: “So far we’ve been to comic book conventions in Philadelphia, Chicago, Miami, Houston, Detroit and New York. San Diego is obviously the biggest, though.”
There’s no telling how big “Head Smash” will become, but judging by past fandom for hot graphic novel properties, the sky’s the limit. “We just had the actor Bill Paxton record some really cool narration for some special trailers we put together,” said Yudin, who notes that with the graphic novel complete, now they can start on the film adaptation.
Perhaps for next year’s fest, if history repeats itself, they’ll unveil the next part of the “Head Smash” saga. After all, as Yudin sums up: “Comic Con is basically a huge celebration for everyone who embraces entertainment.”
For more on “Head Smash,” check out http://headsmash.net/.