Thursday, May 4, 2017

First Look at INHUMANS' Royal Family Revealed

Get ready for the most uncanny heroes of all!  (No, not those uncanny heroes...)

Entertainment Weekly has revealed the first official cast photo from ABC's upcoming series Inhumans, based on the Marvel Comics superteam.  The Inhumans are a race of hybrid alien-human superbeings who have undergone a transformative "terrigenesis," a process that unlocks sometimes strange, but uniquely powerful gifts.  After a military coup, the Inhuman Royal Family escape to Hawaii, where they must save themselves and the world.

The photo of the Inhuman Royal Family includes, from left to right: Eme Ikwuakor as Gorgon, Ken Leung as Karnak, Anson Mount as Black Bolt, Serinda Swan as Medusa, Isabelle Cornish as Crystal, and Iwan Rheon as Maximus.  Here's the full version of the photo above...

In addition, the article features a Q&A with showrunner Scott Buck, the person behind the Netflix series Iron Fist.  Here are some of the highlights...

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Inhumans is a comic that, while beautiful on the page, seems almost impossible to bring to life. How daunting was that task when you took on the role of showrunner?

SCOTT BUCK: Actually, it was an exciting proposition. I had just finished Iron Fist and was looking for a little time off. Then, Jeph Loeb called me and pitched the idea of the Inhumans, the idea of doing a show basically about this family. We discussed each one of the characters, who they are, their personalities, their journeys. I always approach these things through the characters — what’s the story we can tell about Black Bolt, about Medusa and each one of these members of the Royal Family? It may have been daunting, but I think I was, more than anything, just excited about jumping in.

EW: Are there any storylines from the comics that you’re inspired by?

BUCK: I was so curious to see what their origins were, so I started at the very beginning. Obviously if you look at those comics from the early ’60s, they’re a very different tone than what we’re doing. It was fun to see how it all began, but I just continued to leap forward. I have not read all of them, but I continue to look through some of them. There were so many different incarnations of the Inhumans, though, so it was more a matter of figuring out, what’s the story we want to tell? Going back and then reading the whole backstory of them all was very helpful, but from that, we just pretty much moved forward.

EW: Are you planning to lean into the more fantastical elements of Inhumans’ powers, or are you trying to ground the series?

BUCK: To a certain extent, yes, but again, we approach these all as real people who just happen to have these abilities, so they’re all very grounded people. We try to write them as real as possible, and then have fun with the powers when we can. We want their powers to seem like a very natural part of their personality.

EW: Can you say anything about the story we’re going to be seeing with Black Bolt and the Royal Family?

BUCK: Basically we’re telling a story about a family at a very critical juncture in their lives. When we meet up with them, we’re going to find that pretty much everything they’ve ever known is at risk.

EW: Can you say where the show takes place: On Earth or Attilan?

BUCK: I think we’re on both.

EW: Attilan moves, so is Attilan currently on Earth in your story?

BUCK: Not when we go to Attilan, no.

EW: Does Inhumans live in the same universe as Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., considering on Earth there was this explosion of Inhumans?

BUCK: We all inhabit the same universe, so things that have happened on S.H.I.E.L.D. will potentially affect our show as well.

EW: Have you thought about crossover at all?

BUCK: Not at this point. [Laughs] We’re just trying to get this launched.

EW: A show like S.H.I.E.L.D. has a procedural element. Is that the case here or is Inhumans doing more serialized storytelling?

BUCK: I don’t think we’re likened to a procedural show in any way. We’re more of a family drama with one big story leading us through the season.

EW: What do you hope to achieve with the IMAX release?

BUCK: Hopefully, just to get people really excited. I think it’s something that absolutely stands on its own, but hopefully it’ll intrigue people enough to make them want to watch the rest of the show.

EW: Turning to the characters, Black Bolt is such a stoic leader in the comics. How does that translate to screen?

BUCK: Black Bolt is a very difficult character I would think for Anson, but for any actor to play. But Anson is tackling it in a hugely fantastic way. It’s a little bit difficult to write him, because Black Bolt does not speak, but yet he is our hero and he is the center of the show, so it does certainly present challenges in how you tell his story, but fortunately we came up with a really good story. Anson is terrific. I think everyone’s going to be very pleased and excited by his Black Bolt. We’re not doing voice over. If you read the comics, you see Black Bolt does find a way to communicate to people, but he’s also a very enigmatic character as well, and he keeps a lot inside. That’s part of what’s so fascinating about him is that a lot of times, we don’t know what he’s thinking.

EW: What made Iwan Rheon the perfect Maximus?

BUCK: We were so thrilled to get him because he’s such a super talented actor. Obviously we knew him well through Game of Thrones, but he can do a lot more than that. We didn’t want to create just a simple villain who’s evil for the sake of being evil. He’s a very real, three-dimensional character. Iwan is more than capable. Every time we watch dailies of him, we’re just more and more excited about what he’s bringing to the screen.

EW: We all expect this character to be the villain, but are there ways you’re going about to subvert expectations?

BUCK: I think our Maximus is a different, more complicated, more real, more compelling version of Maximus that has been seen in most of the comics, and it’s just because we have the opportunity to do so much more on the screen than you would in a comic book.

EW: How difficult is it to bring Medusa’s hair to life on film?

BUCK: It is very difficult. Even now, it’s still a process. It takes quite a long time in post to make that effect work. We have some of the best visual effects people available working on our show. We still haven’t seen the final version of it; it’s very much a work in process.

EW: Are characters like the fish-like Triton motion capture?

BUCK: Oh no, they’re all actors.

EW: Another character people are curious how you’re going to bring to life is Lockjaw.

BUCK: Lockjaw is probably going to end up being the audience’s favorite character. We certainly enjoy working with him. He’s fun to write, he’s fun to shoot. There’s not too much more detail than that that I can give, but he is going to be a standout on the show.

EW: We know basically nothing about Ellen Woglom’s character.

BUCK: She’s not a character in the comic books. She’s someone new who we have brought in.

EW: Marvel was planning to do an Inhumans movie and then it got delayed. Is this meant to be a primer before the movie? How do these things connect?

BUCK: I have no knowledge of the movie or anything other beyond this. People high up at Marvel may have some sense of what’s going on there, but for me, I’m just working on this TV show, so I have no connection to any movie.

The first two episodes of Inhumans are set to debut on IMAX screens on September 1, 2017, and run for two weeks, before premiering on ABC on September 26, and airing all eight episodes with additional exclusive content that can only be seen on the network.

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