Drawn to Screen: Graphic Novels, Comics
and Serials

The Gallery's Australian Cinémathèque presents films exploring the crossover between the drawn narrative and its adaptation to animation and live-action films.

From classic comic serials to graphic novels, the program brings together over 60 films from around the world that chart the shift from the printed page to screen and the way comic genres and themes challenge personal and cultural expectations. From morally complex superheros through to satirical reflections of the mundane, these films capture our imagination, engage our empathy and prick our social consciousness.

Queensland Art Gallery Director Tony Ellwood said tickets were on sale now for Drawn to Screen: Graphic Novels, Comics and Serials, a program of over 60 live-action and animated films charting 90 years of comic culture’s influence on the moving image.

‘Drawn to Screen will include Friday and Saturday night screenings complemented by a newly refurbished GoMA Lounge Bar transformed into the Gotham Lounge, and a Cosplay event on January 26.

‘The adaptation of comic books, serial strips and manga into animated and live-action film will be examined in several thematic strands,’ Mr Ellwood said.

‘The broad reaching program includes the first film adaptations of comics and comic strips from the 1920s, classics of the MTV generation, big budget superhero epics and hidden gems from around the globe.

‘The earliest works in the program include Dreams of the Rarebit Fiend (1921), Blondie (1938) and the Queensland-filmed The Kid Stakes (1927), which adapts Sydney Nicholls’ Fatty Finn comic strip.

‘Hollywood blockbusters Superman (1978), The Dark Knight (2008) and Iron Man (2008) are complemented by more subversive takes on the superhero genre such as Hellboy (2004) and Watchmen (2009).

‘Stories of vengeance and vigilantism are brought to the fore by a darker strain of hero in The Crow (1994), V for Vendetta (2006) and Korean cult classic Old Boy (2003), while the pulpy worlds of Barbarella (1968), Flash Gordon (1980) and Heavy Metal (1981) capture the escapism of guilty pleasures.’

Mr Ellwood said films paying homage to the medium of comics but not drawn directly from their pages, including Chasing Amy (1997) and Mirrormask (2005), would also feature.

‘The visionary creators behind some of the most acclaimed work in comics – including Robert Crumb, Alan Moore and Grant Morrison – are featured in a series of documentaries which also includes the Australian premieres of Warren Ellis: Captured Ghosts (2011) and MétaMoebius: Giraud-Moebius, Metamorphoses (2010),’ he said.

The newly refurbished GoMA Lounge Bar will be transformed into the Gotham Lounge for drinks and light meals from 5.30pm every Friday and Saturday during the season.  On the January 26 public holiday, the Gallery’s first Cosplay event invites enthusiasts to recreate their favourite anime, manga, comic and film character costumes for prizes.

Drawn to Screen: Graphic Novels, Comics and Serials
Venue: GoMA

Dates:  06/01–04/03/12
Official Site:

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