Mark Millar's Movie Madness

On Wednesday, the stars of director Timur Bekmambetov's Universal Pictures adaptation of Mark Millar and J.G. Jones' Top Cow series "Wanted" hit the red carpet to celebrate the film's premier (it hits US theaters nation June 27,) and amongst the glam and glitz of another Angelina Jolie public appearance was a certain Scotsman...and his entire family.

"And the babysitter!" laughed Millar on the phone before shipping off to the event. "I couldn't believe Universal paid for this because to fly everyone first class? It's going to cost more than the movie! I've got a huge Catholic family, so there's a big gang of us."

And while Millar was more than ecstatic to finally see he and Jones' comic book vision up on the big screen, the crazier event takes place next week just around the corner from his home. "What's worse is that there's a premier here in Scotland next Tuesday, and there's 200 seats in the hall, and they asked me how many I needed. And genuinely, just my immediate family and their kids and a few friends is 140 people out of 200 seats. And Universal said, 'Sure. We'll do it. That's fine.' And I said, '140?' And to their credit, they managed to find a bigger hall, and all 140 people are coming. It's absolutely nuts.

"And there's an event with an open bar afterwards, so all my family can drink as much as they want, and most of my family are alcoholics, so it's an adventure."

Exploded studio travel and booze budgets aside, the debut of the "Wanted" movie is the culmination of Millar's first turn in the film business, and he's happily noted that his connection to "Wanted" has been a positive one. "I worked on it, so four months ago they had me out in L.A. to do an edit on it - to add in some scenes and tweak some dialogue," explained Millar. "So before they had a final cut, they got me out and I spent a week looking at it. Then they spent two months doing reshoots and tweaking the special effects. So I saw it in a very unfinished state without music, and it was obviously missing the new scenes that we added. This will be the first time I see it in a final polished state. It's very, very exciting."

And as quick a turnaround "Wanted" has had since being optioned for the screen, Millar is already knee-deep in his next movie adaptation, a live-action version of he and John Romita, Jr.'s Icon series "Kick-Ass" which is heavily rumored to be co-written and directed by "Stardust's" Matthew Vaughn.

"I'm working as a producer on ['Kick-Ass'] as well, so I've been involved for about eight months, believe it or not," the writer said. "The comic didn't come out until February, but we made the deal on the movie back in December. The script was finished six months ago, and it starts filming on location in New York in August. So it's moving really fast."

In terms of the talent involved, Millar played coy, but did note that all the pieces had fallen into place to make "Kick-Ass" er...kick-ass. "The casting's all been done, and everything's all in line now with that. There's two big names attached, which I can't mention so we can get on the cover of 'Variety.' And now we've got everyone. The kids who show up at the end of issue #3 - we just cast the girl, and that was a really tricky one because we needed to find someone who could do martial arts stuff. So the whole movie's ready to role."

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