Dynamite Entertainment is proud to announce the signing of writer David F. Walker and artist Bilquis Evely to its upcoming Shaft comic book, based on the hard-hitting detective created by novelist Ernest Tidyman and popularized in films featuring Richard Roundtree and Samuel L. Jackson. Slated for release in December, Shaft #1 celebrates the 45th anniversary of an American icon with a wealth of cover art options by industry talents including Francesco Francavilla, Michael Avon Oeming, Ulises Farinas, Matt Haley, Sanford Greene, and a landmark collaboration between Denys Cowan and Bill Sienkiewicz.
John Shaft, described as a “tough, take-no-guff detective” and “private dick that’s a sex machine to all the chicks” in composer/singer Isaac Hayes’ Oscar-winning Theme from Shaft, has gone toe-to-toe with organized crime bosses, stood up to the cops, squared off against kidnappers, and foiled assassination attempts in his novel and film appearances. But who was John Shaft before he became the hardboiled investigator with a reputation as big as New York City itself? For the first time ever, the detective’s origins are explored, courtesy of the new series by Dynamite Entertainment.
“Working on Shaft, one of the most iconic characters in pop culture, is a dream come true,” says David F. Walker. “I’ve been a fan of the character since I was a kid, and especially love him in his original iteration, as created by author Ernest Tidyman. My take on Shaft is steeped in Tidyman’s work, and builds on the world created in the original novels. I’m exploring who he is as a man, as a private detective, and as a cold-blooded killer. This John Shaft is much grittier, more badass, with a complexity never seen in the films. The name may be familiar, and some aspects of the character may be recognizable, but at the end of the day, he will be something new and exciting – especially in the world of comics. This is Shaft the way Shaft was meant to be.”
David F. Walker is an award-winning journalist, filmmaker, and author of the Young Adult series The Adventures of Darius Logan. His publication BadAzz MoFo became internationally known as the indispensable resource guide to black films of the 1970s, and he is co-author of the book Reflections on Blaxploitation: Actors and Directors Speak. His work in comics includes the series Number 13 (Dark Horse Comics), The Army of Dr. Moreau (Monkeybrain Comics), and The Supernals Experiment (Canon Comics).
Bilquis Evely is a rising star on Dynamite’s roster of talented artists. Recently she worked alongside writer Chris Roberson on the critically acclaimed Doc Savage miniseries. Her other works include The Shadow / Green Hornet: Dark Nights crossover event with writer Michael Uslan, The Shadow Annual #1, and Miss Fury. Evely’s experience with Dynamite’s pulp heroes has made her the perfect fit for the mean streets of 1970’s New York City in Shaft.
“The response by the media and fans over the announcement of a Shaft comic book series was nothing short of electric,” says Nick Barrucci, Publisher and CEO of Dynamite Entertainment. “Frankly, there’s no one better suited to take the reins on this project than David F. Walker, whose vast knowledge of and appreciation for the genre have been welcome and invaluable in our launch of the Shaft series. Combining his energetic take on this superbad private detective with Bliquis Evely’s impressive artistic skills, we have all the makings of an explosive comic for Shaft fans to love.”
Shaft #1 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors’ October Previews catalog, the premiere source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market, and slated for release in December. Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Shaft #1 with their local comic book retailers. Shaft will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, iVerse, and Dark Horse Digital.
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About Dynamite Entertainment:
Dynamite was founded in 2004 and is home to several best-selling comic book titles and properties, including The Boys, The Shadow, Red Sonja,Warlord of Mars, Bionic Man, A Game of Thrones, Bob’s Burgers, and more. Dynamite owns and controls an extensive library with over 3,000 characters (which includes the Harris Comics and Chaos Comics properties), such as Vampirella, Pantha, Evil Ernie, Smiley the Psychotic Button,Chastity, and Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt. In addition to their critically-acclaimed titles and bestselling comics, Dynamite works with some of the most high profile creators in comics and entertainment, including Kevin Smith, Alex Ross, Neil Gaiman, Andy Diggle, John Cassaday, Garth Ennis, Jae Lee, Marc Guggenheim, Mike Carey, Jim Krueger, Greg Pak, Brett Matthews, Matt Wagner, Gail Simone, Steve Niles, James Robinson, and a host of up-and-coming new talent. Dynamite is consistently ranked in the upper tiers of comic book publishers and several of their titles – including Alex Ross and Jim Krueger’s Project Superpowers – have debuted in the Top Ten lists produced by Diamond Comics Distributors. In 2005, Diamond awarded the company a GEM award for Best New Publisher and another GEM in 2006 for Comics Publisher of the Year (under 5%) and again in 2011. The company has also been nominated for and won several industry awards, including the prestigious Harvey and Eisner Awards.
All characters, names, logos, etc. are ™ and © their respective owners. Press release written by Kevin Pearl and Keith Davidsen.