What if all of the urban legends we all fear…were real?
In URBAN LEGENDZ, a group of young vigilantes dedicates themselves to solving a series of supernatural crimes in Brooklyn.
After his mother’s death, Dwayne is forced to uproot himself and move into the home where his mother grew up: a shabby apartment in Brooklyn. When your dad is a police officer, and your brother’s too cool for school, what’s an insecure teen supposed to do? Dwayne’s personal problems are cast aside when he joins a new crew of young vigilantes, devoted to solving a series of sinister cases surrounding mysterious monsters that have been wreaking havoc throughout the city.
Acclaimed animators Nick Bruno, Paul Downs, and Michael Yates make their graphic novel debut with a spooky, supernatural graphic novel for readers of all ages.
“At first glance, URBAN LEGENDZ appears to be a supernatural trip into nostalgia. But when you read between the lines, you’ll discover a timeless message about how having a few good friends, can help us all overcome the “monsters” we’ll face in our lives.”—Nick Bruno
“Our goal with Urban Legendz was to tell a supernatural story with meaning. A nostalgic adventure, centered around a diverse group of friends who are dealing with present-day social issues (family dynamics, homelessness, gentrification). I grew up in a city, where our childhood adventures may have looked a little bit different than the classic Spielbergian suburbs, but were equally as magical. This was our opportunity to tell one of those stories. After all, why should the suburbs have all the fun?”—Paul Downs
“As a kid, I grew up on a steady diet of comics and animation. In middle school, I’d take some of my favorite animation worlds, like Akira, and Dragonball Z and do my own comic spinoffs. I’d take a stack of printer paper stapled together and lose hours drawing and telling stories. The biggest difference being my stories would include characters that looked like me. This has been a goal of mine since I’ve entered into the animation industry and now into comics. I just want that little black kid in rural Indiana to see himself in some of the stories he was lost in.”—Michael Yates
Humanoids will publish URBAN LEGENDZ in bookstores on June 11th and in comic shops on June 12th.
About the creators:
Nick Bruno is an American film director and animator at Blue Sky Studios, who in 2019 will make his Directorial debut with the animated Spies in Disguise. Bruno was born and raised in Mohegan Lake, New York, where, at an early age, he learned he could combine his love for drawing and filmmaking by pursuing a career in animation. He studied illustration and the fine arts at UMass Dartmouth, and went on to receive his Masters at NYU studying computer animation. In 2005, Bruno joined Blue Sky Studios as a junior animator on the feature film Ice Age: The Meltdown. In 2015, VARIETY named Bruno one of their “Ten Animators to Watch.” Bruno resides in New York state with his wife Allison and their three children.
Paul Downs is a screenwriter, animator and educator with seventeen years of experience spanning film, commercial and video game production. Paul has written and developed projects for Cartoon Network, 20th Century Fox, and a live-action family film being produced by Smart Entertainment (Blades of Glory, Anger Management, Paul’s animation credits include Robots, Ice Age franchise, Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who, Rio, Epic, Free Birds, Spies in Disguise, the 2017 Oscar® nominated fim Ferdinand as well as the two short films Surviving Sid and the Oscar® nominated No Time for Nuts. Paul lives in Florida, with his wife Jen and their two children, where he teaches Story/Animation at Ringling College of Art and Design.
Michael Yates is a story artist and director living in Northern California. He currently works as a story artist at PIXAR Animation Studios where his credits include Cars 3and the upcoming Toy Story. Before that, Michael worked on Guillermo Del Toro’s Trollhunters at DreamWorks Animation Studios. His previous clients include Walt Disney Animation studios and the Cartoon Network series Craig of the Creek. He also co-directed the award winning short Legend of the Flying Tomato.