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Years Worth Of Material: A NYCC Interview With Sandy King Carpenter

Written by Tim Midura on Tuesday, October 24 2017 and posted in News with Benefits

Years Worth Of Material: A NYCC Interview With Sandy King Carpenter

On adapting for television, all kinds of horror, and instant gratification through comics.

Source: New York Comic Con

Sandy King Carpenter is an American movie producer and script supervisor. Her film work includes They Live, Ghosts of Mars, Big Trouble In Little China, and Sixteen Candles. Her latest venture is Storm King Comics with husband John Carpenter, whose titles include Asylum, Tales Of Science Fiction, and Tales For A Halloweenight.


Tim: The third volume of Tales For A Halloweenight came out this week. How has that been?

Sandy: Well, so far at the convention it's been great. That's our only experience. It shipped here and it looks good. People seem to be having a good time.

Tim: You recently partnered with Universal, making the move to television. Is this your first foray into television?

Sandy: We did Body Bags at Showtime. John did Elvis. I did TV series in the past. We haven't done TV together besides Body Bags. But this is the first time, we've had an overall deal with a studio. We have a slate of things coming. That'll be kind of interesting.

Tim: Tales For A Halloweenight is already in development at SyFy. How do you decide which stories go into that?

Sandy: I don't know. We'll find out. It's new.

Tim: You're also developing Nightside. Can you talk a little bit more about it?

Sandy: Jill Blotevogel is the writer on that. She just turned in a first draft of the pilot script. So we'll find out how that went too. That literally was turned in yesterday. She's a good writer. It's a really cool series. It's like Harry Potter for grown ups, since they have nowhere to go once they're older. It's an expansive world. I think it's a great base for a series. It'll appeal to the Doctor Who fans, the "I've outgrown Harry Potter" fans, and the John Carpenter fans who want something a little eerie, a little dark because it's got a bit of dark, detective-noir stuff and supernatural. I think it's going to be a lot of fun.

Tim: Tales For A Halloweenight is a Storm King book, while Nightside is an outside property. Are you balancing bringing in own work into the TV deals?

Sandy: It's a coincidence. I never know what studios and networks are going to like. With Tales For A Halloweenight, I think they liked the title and the notion of something like that for a seasonal series. It's a fun idea, but to get the tone exactly right and not let down our fans, the obligation is to not do something that's just barfing back the stories from the books. But to get the flavor of what we try to do with the books, an evening of all kinds of horror. Intellectual horror. Bug horror. Haunted houses. How do we then translate that to a TV series and make something a little different?

I think that becomes the challenge. The intent with our comics is to never make them a development brand for television or a movie. So when the opportunity presents itself, we can't screw that up. How do we make that a separate, but equal experience? Maybe we'll pull from some of these stories, but we need to get the same vibe.

Tim: So you're not really using the comics as source material.

Sandy: We may dip into them from time to time, but it's really more about how to get that vibe in a different medium. That's our biggest concern. I don't know if that's the network or the studio's biggest concern, but that's our biggest concern.

Tim: What's the future of Storm King Comics?

Sandy: Who the hell knows? For us, the comics have been a really pleasant surprise. When we did Asylum, it was just something that seemed like a good idea to do that story as a comic. We found we really enjoyed it and the fans really enjoyed it. Halloweenights we thought was a one-shot deal, but it ended up winning awards. The fans loved it so we did another and another. It's become a great tradition for us. More and more writers that we enjoy are coming to be a part of it. Number four is already underway for next year. With Tales Of Science Fiction, James [Ninness] just wrapped up his series of Vault. Vortex comes out starting the 25th of this month. It'll run for eight months. I've got stories for the next three years.

It kind of shows you that we're a little bit like addicts. Buying comics wasn't good enough. We had to make them. We're really digging it. It's another way to really work with creative writers and artists. We're reaching fans in a direct way that's fun for us. It's akin to John touring with his music. It's instant feedback from fans. For most of our careers, we've made stuff that's been well-received, but it's delayed gratification. It's a year down the line or you're already onto something else. This is really fun. People are either loving or hating it right away. It's fun and who doesn't want to have fun?


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About the Author - Tim Midura

Born in the frozen tundra of Massachusetts, Tim Midura has long possessed a love for comic books and records. After stealing the beard of Zeus and inventing the pizza bagel, a much more heavily tattooed and bearded Tim Midura has finally settled in San Diego. He's the world's first comics journalist who doesn't want to become a comics writer. Find him on twitter, facebook or by email.

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