Who is Mark Millar?
Mark Millar MBE is one of the most successful British comic book writers of all time. You’ll be forgiven if you’ve not heard his name, but being ignorant to his body of work is not to be expected in this era of big screen adaptations. Wanted, Kick-Ass, Kingsman and the least popular Fantastic Four movie – I’ll let you work that one out – are all direct adaptations of Millar’s work.
Captain America: Civil War and Logan are based on his Marvel event Civil War and Old Man Logan respectively. There are even two animated features by Marvel Studios, Ultimate Avengers 1 and 2, which are direct adaptations of Millar’s The Ultimates. Our fandom has been recently furnished with the newly released Superman: Red Son animated movie. So I would hope, if nothing else, you’ve at least heard of Mark Millar. If you haven’t, please check out some of these films! Or better yet, his comics.
Mark is a Scottish comic book veteran, having worked for every major publisher at some point in his life. His humble beginnings with the UK’s ‘Sonic the Comic’ and 2000AD borrowed him the opportunity for his big break working with Grant Morrison and eventually DC Comics. He is extremely controversial, with some avid comic readers avoiding Millar’s name completely. He’s been described by many as an “edge lord”. Even those who dislike Millar’s work will be unable to debate his huge success in comic books and cinema.
What is ‘Millarworld’?
Millarworld was a creator-owned line that independently produced comic books with different artists and publishers. I say “was”, as even though Millarworld is very much still alive and kicking, it’s a very different beast to what it was in its inception back in 2004.
Millarworld wasn’t ever a publisher, which is one common mistake made when discussing the line. ‘Universe’ is probably indeed the best term to describe Millarworld, given its shared world despite originally published between Avatar Press, Top Cow, Image and Icon (subsidiary of Marvel). Millarworld is a banner for a multitude of books, mostly written by Millar, with a collection of different artists and collaborators. These days Millarworld books are almost always published by Image. Millarworld was purchased by Netflix in 2017 and Mark has been hard at work since, penning books, tv shows and films for the brand.
- Red Razors, 2000AD
- Big Dave, 2000AD
- Swamp Thing: Trial by Fire, DC Comics (then Vertigo)
- Superman Red Son, DC Comics
- The Authority (The Nativity, Earth Inferno, Brave New World), Wildstorm Comics (DC Imprint)
- Ultimate Fantastic Four (hardcover volumes 1-3), Marvel Comics
- Civil War, Marvel Comics
- Marvel 1985, Marvel Comics
- Old Man Logan, Marvel Comics
- Kick-Ass, Icon/Image
- Jupiter’s Legacy, Image
- Jupiter’s Circle, Image
- The Magic Order, Image
In 2020 we will see the third film in the Kingsman saga: ‘The King’s Man’, something to look forward to in cinemas September.
On Millar’s Netflix front, though, someone has been very busy. The first project is ‘Jupiter’s Legacy’, an episodic show which is now in post-production and nearly ready to drop although a date hasn’t been announced yet.
Netflix also have series based on American Jesus and The Magic Order, movies based on Huck, Empress, Reborn, Prodigy and Sharkey the Bounty Hunter. Netflix also announced an anime adapting Supercrooks.
Both Millarworld and Netflix keep many of their projects under wraps until mere months, sometimes days, until release. But it’s an exciting time to be a Mark Millar fan!