The Men Behind the Wheel

ImageWatching Darin Scott and Ed Polgardy together, one would think that they’ve been life-long friends. Their passion for comics, graphic novels and genre films are equally matched and they have that kind of rapport with each other that most of us spend a lifetime searching for. No doubt these two thriving businessmen would venture into a business together, and the union has brought about CinemaGraphix, which is an exciting endeavor for the pair because of their like-minded respect and infatuation with graphic novels and film.

Although Polgardy has wanted to work in film since he was a teenager, he would find a place for himself in the world of comics. His first graphic novel, From the Darkness was released in the early 90s and was an immediate hit. Soon Ed found himself as the editor-in-chief at Big Entertainment. Scott, another behind-the-scenes guy has produced the films Menace II Society and Tales From the Hood as well as directing the feature Caught Up starring Bookem Woodbine. Like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, this became two great tastes that taste great together! “Both of us have been voracious fans and readers of comic book since we were in grade school,” Polgardy says. “When graphic novels came along, it was just a new and exciting format that expanded the storytelling possibilities of comics. We were both on board from the jump.”

“[We want] CinemaGraphix to become a place where comics and movie fans can turn to for exciting concepts and characters,” Scott interjects. “A place where fresh ideas and terrific art are commonplace. We want our readers to feel like they’ve just watched a terrific movie when they read one of our books, and we want the viewers of our films to feel inspired to run out and buy some comic books. That’s what we call synergy.”

The duo has gotten off to a strong start too, with the highly anticipated release of The Night Driver, CinemaGraphix first graphic novel. Polgardy explains why they chose John Cork’s darkly menacing thriller as the springboard for CinemaGraphix. “We thought it’d be great to launch our company with an intelligent noir-ish-horror-thriller with great visual style and fascinating psychological element. John’s story fit the bill perfectly, so we ran with it.”

They are thrilled about the upcoming release and have always been enamored with the more sinister side of graphic novels. Scott says, “[We love] classics like The Watchmen and Dark Night Returns, all the Sin City series, 30 Days Of Night, Road To Perdition, you know, all the light  and frothy stuff!” Polgardy adds, “We’re also current readers and fans. We work with writers who specialize in hip, cutting-edge, cinematic stories.  But we don’t follow trends, we seek to set them.” Image

With cinematic stories in mind, the Night Driver follows traveling businessman Hurdis on a road to nowhere – or so he thinks. Scott elaborates, “I like to call The Night Driver the thinking-man’s Hitcher with elements of the film Duel.  People will relate to the plight of our lead character, an ordinary man who loses control of his life through a minor incident.  He’s plunged into a nightmarish journey that includes suspense, terror, temptation, and paranoia.” The epic tale of The Night Driver will be told in a 3 parts.

CinemaGraphix is also in tune with the burgeoning trend of turning graphic novels into movies. Along with developing vivid concepts and evocative artwork for their novels, they also want to conjure up the world of films in their books. Polgardy explains, “Because movies and graphic novels are both visual storytelling mediums, and graphic novels have become much more literate and varied in subject matter over the years, they’re an excellent source for film projects. In a way, the graphic novel is often like a movie on paper.” It is this self-awareness that keeps both men searching for the perfect material to represent CinemaGraphix. “The main goal,” Polgardy continues, “is finding stories that will translate extremely well in multiple mediums. Some projects are only suited to the comic form of storytelling, and others only work in film but not comics. We want to work on projects that will be great in both arenas, so that means we have to pass on a lot of cool ideas that just aren’t right for us.”

Based on that ambition to cross the comic genre with the world of movies, CinemaGraphix is going to unleash several novels that should satiate the diverse needs of their audience. “We have very cool things coming down the pike in a variety of genres. In horror we have Wrath and Marked. In action-drama there is The Operators. For science fiction we have Earth No More, in Fantasy there will be Mighty Oliver. And we’ll even have family orientated novels like Granny Justice and Double 0 Dogs. Whatever your tastes and interests, I think you’ll find high quality entertainment coming from CinemaGraphix.”

This interview first appeared on Pretty Scary.

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