In a few months, audiences will watch Tom Cruise in another science fiction action movie with Edge of Tomorrow. While Japanese author Hiroshi Sakurazaka’s All You Need Is Kill is getting a new film adaptation, the novel will also receive a new English-language graphic novel that will follow more closely to the original source material than the film version.
In an interview with The Motley Fool, Nick Mamatas, a writer responsible for the graphic novel adaptation from Viz Media, talked about how close the new comic book will be to Sakurazaka’s original novel. Apparently, the new graphic novel will be very similar to the novel, but its characteristic action will be expanded in comic book form. Mamatas explains:
“The plot is almost exactly the same. What we had to do is pare down some of the plot—even a relatively short prose novel can become an extremely long graphic novel if every incident is kept in—and expand some of the action. All You Need Is Kill is told, mostly, in a tightly controlled first-person. Such a narrator isn’t going to give a blow-by-blow of every battle he’s been in. In a visual medium like a comic, however, people want to see the action, so we got to do a lot of fun battle choreography.”
While Warner Bros didn’t have a say in the direction of the new graphic novel, its writers and artists are making sure that they are trying to avoid any changes to the comic book’s plot that could overlap with Edge of Tomorrow. Mamatas continued, “The film is going for a grim dark future, with bulky exo-suits and lots of gray tones,” while the graphic novel is based on “more of a sci-fi retrofuture look, with slick battle armor and lots of primary colors.”
Although the movie is different than the original novel and the new graphic novel, Edge of Tomorrow stays true to the overall world, style, and story established by Hiroshi Sakurazaka for All You Need Is Kill. In fact, when Viz Media saw the first trailer for Edge of Tomorrow, Joel Enos, an editor for the graphic novel, and Nick Mamatas were relieved that it wasn’t something completely different. Mamatas, “was worried that it would be all noise and putatively witty one-liners, like Transformers or something.”
If Edge of Tomorrow is a successful film when it opens next June, its success could open the door for other film adaptations of Hiroshi Sakurazaka novels, namely “Slum Online,” a cautionary tale of videogame obsession that takes place in the future. Viz Media also has the rights to “Slum Online,” so Joel Enos and Nick Mamatas are rooting for the box office success of Edge of Tomorrow to possibly make Sakurazaka’s video game story into a new graphic novel.
Edge of Tomorrow takes place in the distant future, after an alien race called Mimics have attacked the Earth. Tom Cruise plays Col. Cage, an army officer who is thrown into combat with very little training and experience in the field. He is killed within minutes, but is caught in a time loop that forces him to re-live the battle again. Throughout the film, Col. Cage has to fight and die again and again, until he figures out a way to stop the cycle and defeat the invading alien race with the help of Special Forces warrior Rita Vrataski, played by Emily Blunt.
Screenwriters Joby Harold, Steve Kloves, Christopher McQuarrie, Tim Kring, Jez Butterworth, Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci all had a hand in adapting All You Need Is Kill for the big screen, while Doug Liman, who is a serviceable action film director with movies such as The Bourne Identity, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, and Jumper under his belt, directed Edge of Tomorrow. In addition to Cruise and Blunt, the sci-fi film also features Lara Pulver, Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Jeremy Piven, Bill Paxton, Charlotte Riley, and Jonas Armstrong.
Edge of Tomorrow will hit theaters everywhere on June 6, 2014. The All You Need Is Kill graphic novel will hit comic book retailers, physical and online, some time in May 2014.