Why comic books and movies make a dynamic duo

Saturday, May 6 is Free Comic Book Day and “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” opens in theaters. Here’s a look at the evolution of the comic book adaptations to the big screen and the impact of the comic book genre on moviemaking.

Compiled by CHRIS RAMOS and KURT SNIBBE/Southern California News Group

OG: ORIGINAL GUARDIANS

Invading pop culture with their blockbuster 2014 film, the Guardians of the Galaxy have gained instant success. Using characters based on the 2008 comic series, the film did not feature the original team. Here’s what the original Guardians of the Galaxy squad looked like.

First comic appearance: Marvel Super-Heroes #18, January 1969

Set in the 31st century, the original Guardians of the Galaxy were freedom fighters formed to fight a system conquering an alien race called the Badoon.

original-guardiansFirst self titled issue: Guardians of the Galaxy #1, June 1990

21 years after their debut, the Guardians get a self-titled comic series of their own. Still set in the 31st century, some of their adventures have them time traveling back to the 20th century fighting alongside the Avengers.

Modern Guardians of the Galaxy team

Based on the 2008 comic series

guardians of the galaxyCOMIC BOOK TO BOX OFFICE

The first weekend in May generally marks the start of the summer movie season. In 2002, a movie grossed more than $100 million in four days for the first time. The comic book adaption “Spider-Man” reached the milestone by grossing $114 million May 2-5.
Biggest opening weekend (Film, year, in millions)

opening weekendsCOMIC BOOK LANDSCAPE

Not a month goes by without the release of a new comic book-themed movie in theaters. This has done a lot to energize the sales and popularity of the comic books.

indsutry-snapshotIS “STAR WARS” A COMIC BOOK?

The “Star Wars” franchise is one of the most successful film franchises to be a top seller in comic books as well.
In 2015, a “Star Wars” comic book was the best-selling book of the year, and four of the top 10 comic books sold were Star Wars themed story lines. The top-selling book shown to the right has sold more than 900,000 copies.

star wars coverBargain books
Comic books generally retail for about $3.99. Not a bad price compared to an average movie ticket (for children ages 2-12) which is $10.69 and May 6 you can get one for free at your local comic book store.

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