Steven Grant's 'Badlands' lives on in screen-play form

[Badlands]This weekend Ait/Planet-Lar publisher Larry Young announced that his company will be releasing a very unique comics related product by Steven Grant that's not actually a comic.

In 1991 Dark Horse Comics published a 6 issue mini-series written by Grant with art by Vince Giarrano called "Badlands." The book takes place in 1963 America and follows events surrounding the assassination of President Kennedy. It stars Conrad "Connie" Bremen, an ex-con unable to escape his sordid past because the Mob, the CIA and FBI all have very specific plans for him and those plans include a plot to murder the president. The series was later collected by Dark Horse in trade paperback form, but one more piece of the "Badlands" story exists that hasn't yet been seen by the public.

"Steven Grant thinks comics are 'paper movies,' so much so he's named his company that," said Young in the release. "One day, I was on the phone with him, and somehow the tide of the topic turned to media tie-ins and comics-to-film adaptations. Grant let slip that he's had a screenplay version of 'Badlands' in his files for quite some time, and only some rarefied Hollywood types had ever seen it. I started drooling at the thought of getting it out in front of a waiting mass audience."

"Since 'Badlands' -- since before it was originally published, actually -- I've had producers approaching me regularly for the film rights, and they always had a 'vision' of a movie that bore almost no connection to the book," said Grant in the release. "So I wrote a BADLANDS screenplay out of self-defense, and now any time producers contact me I give them the screenplay and say 'Fine, make THIS movie and we've got a deal.' And if one ever nibbles, I'll follow up with, 'Oh, by the way, did I mention I'm directing?'

"Then Larry heard about it and went nuts, pestering me constantly for the rights to publish the screenplay. And I thought producers were bad. But what can you do in the face of such overwhelming enthusiasm? Larry always gets what he wants."

"Badlands: The Unproduced Screenplay" sports a cover designed by Brian Wood and will be in stores June, 2002.

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