An animated giallo
During WonderCon panel “Halo-8: Comic Books & Illustrated Films,” Halo-8 reps announced their next original comic-book/illustrated-film transmedia combo will be Matt Pizzolo’s The Long Knives, “a giallo horror, bare-knuckled revenge movie with an otherworldly Tim Burton-esque aesthetic.” That visual aesthetic will come courtesy of newcomer illustrator Ana Ludeshka.
“I wanted to do a gritty-realism horror with a dark-hearted toughness like the first Mad Max, which totally kicked me in the nuts when I first saw it as a kid,” explained Pizzolo. “But I didn’t want the over-the-top visuals to fall into torture-porn, so it seemed like an awesome fit to do this in a giallo style and tie-in the stylized-horror of my faves Mario Bava & Dario Argento. Ludeshka’s ethereal visuals and extreme use of color are a perfect fit, and I was super excited to discover her for this.”
Similar to Pizzolo’s previous transmedia project Godkiller (which will make its feature film debut at Chicago’s C2E2 April 16), The Long Knives will be simultaneously produced as a comic book and an illustrated film. This will also mark the first time two Halo-8 titles take place in a “shared universe,” common to comic books but unique for film.
“Godkiller and The Long Knives take place in a shared world, so there will be crossover between the two projects,” said Pizzolo. “We’re going to do something fun for a Godkiller epilogue on the full-length DVD/Blu-ray [coming May 25], but we’re not ready to announce that yet.”
Though no formal announcements have been made about The Long Knives voice cast, Pizzolo has already begun assembling his ensemble. The Godkiller ensemble included genre-heroes Lance Henriksen (Aliens), Danielle Harris (Halloween 4, 5, I, II), Bill Moseley (The Devil’s Rejects), Nicki Clyne (Battlestar Galactica), Tiffany Shepis (Night of the Demons), alt-culture icon Lydia Lunch (Hardcore), and rockstars Justin Pierre (singer of Motion City Soundtrack) and Davey Havok (singer of AFI).
‘Illustrated-films’ are a new style of animation developed by Pizzolo with his producing partner, Emmy-winner Brian Giberson. Starting with sequential still images, the illustrated-film adds 3D CGI, motion graphics, elaborate sound design, and dramatic voice performances for an edgy, sophisticated, intricately detailed new form of animation. Danielle Harris told iF Magazine “it’s more like moving art than animation, with very good writing.” Upcoming illustrated-films from Halo-8 include Tim Seeley’s Loaded Bible and James Farr’s Xombie: Reanimated.