May 102013
 

Today’s fanart is from a 2012 April Fools joke on the Finnish site Kvaak.fi. If Google Translate makes correct sense of it, the story was that the next one-shot would be made by an unknown Finnish duo, Areng & Leaudelaboue:

April Fools fanart (ill. "Areng & Leaudelaboue," apparently Anssi Rauhala)

Supposedly a panel from the upcoming one-shot ‘La Croix de Fer du Ramsès II’ (“The Iron Cross of Ramses II”) by Areng & Leaudelaboue

In reality, it seems, those names are an obscure Finnish pun, and it was really drawn by Anssi Rauhala. (Anyone who can actually read Finnish are more than welcome to correct any misunderstandings or add further detail.)

May 082013
 

Belgian Comic Strip Center (photo Daniel Fouss)

Among this year’s many Spirou exhibitions, it’s perhaps worth mentioning the one at the Belgian Comic Strip Center in Brussels, “Spirou passed from hand to hand” (23 April – 6 October) if only because the website and catalog are available in English.

… Oh, and because it features a number of sketches for possible upcoming one-shots:

(Photos from Stripspeciaalzaak)

May 072013
 
Yoann (photo by Cecil McKinley, from BDZoom)

Yoann Chivard

BDZoom has a nice interview with Yoann (in French). He talks a bit about his working process and his philosophy with regards to the series. Well worth checking out (e.g. via Google Translate)! But if you don’t have the patience for that, I’d like to highlight some interesting figures: he mentions that under Tome & Janry, each adventure sold about 250 000 copies, while they’re now at around 80 000. (Presumably, this refers to European sales of the French edition.)

He also says that he and Vehlmann have been offered another 5-year contract to continue with Spirou (after their initial 3-year contract), and were just about to accept. I believe I’ve seen elsewhere that it’s now official, so we can look forward to several more Spirou albums by Yoann & Vehlmann over the next few years. Good news, I say!

Apr 262013
 

No, it’s not an upcoming movie, but a digital comic to run in the Spirou magazine’s new tablet app, Spirou.Z.

Spirou.Z ad (ill. Dupuis, Yoann)

As reported by InediSpirou, La théorie des dominos (“The Domino Theory”) is a story in seven parts, written by Christopher (Christopher Longé), and with each 8-page episode illustrated by a different Pixar artist. Each episode is told from the point of view of a different character from the Spirou universe, and at the end of each part, another character gets involved and takes over the story.

The first episode stars Seccotine (aka “Cellophine” in English), and will be illustrated by Bill Presing. Subsequent parts will focus on Fantasio, Zorglub, the Count of Champignac, Zantafio, Spirou, and finally Spip. Other illustrators expected to contribute include Ted Mathot, Ronnie del Carmen and Pascal Campion.

La théorie des dominos will be available as a digital-only release starting in October, when the first regular issue of Spirou.Z comes out, and presumably there’ll be another installment in each monthly issue. Once complete, plans are to collect the parts into a printed album in the le Spirou de… one-shot series.

One interesting aspect of this is that the “demo issue” #0 of Spirou.Z that is currently available on iTunes lets you choose between English and French. If that holds true for future issues as well, this could be the first Spirou adventure with a simultaneous English release.

Apr 232013
 

To coincide with the big Spirou anniversary on Sunday, the premier French-language fan site, InediSpirou, relaunched a section of the site that had been down for maintenance a long time.

The InediSpirou Library is a new and improved (?) version of a remarkable archive, with entries for practically any Spirou-related publication ever, and original articles. Probably the most interesting part, however, is a collection of every Spirou story that has not been collected in album or book form (in French), some that were never published at all, and a large number of sketches and illustrations. For the relaunch of the collection, these have been rescanned in higher resolution and better quality. Continue reading »