Axel-In-Charge: Extending "Secret Wars," Excitement for a "Totally Awesome Hulk"
This is the one-hundred and sixty-first in a series of examinations of comic book urban legends and whether they are true or false. Click here for an archive of the previous one-hundred and sixty. Click here for a similar archive, only arranged by subject.
Like the Spanish Inquisition, some things you just never expect…like an all-Dazzler theme week!!!!
COMIC URBAN LEGEND: Jim Shooter wrote a Dazzler film treatment working in roles for Cher, Rodney Dangerfield, KISS, Robin Williams, Donna Summer, the Village People and both Michael McKean and David Lander!
With the amount of information that I have already featured on the fact that Dazzler was originally meant to be a tie-in with Casablanca Records, you would think that I had exhausted all the information there was on the subject. I know I sure thought that to be the case.
So I was quite shocked when, in response to a question on the subject, Jim Shooter graciously let me in on an amazing piece of information that I had never heard before – that the Dazzler character was first intended to be featured in an animated film, and the film was to feature all the artists that Casablanca had under contract!
Here is Shooter describing the situation:
The Marvel brass wanted a treatment done over the weekend. The Casablanca people wanted to use many of the people they had under contract, including Donna Summer, Cher, Rodney Dangerfield, Lenny and Squiggy, Robin Williams, the Village People, Kiss and more as the voices of the characters. They told me “hire anyone you want” to write the treatment. Our film/TV agent suggested Harlan Ellison. Fat chance I could get H.E. up to speed and get him to write something in four days. I considered my options and decided that it was me or nobody — I’d be the hero or the goat. I delivered as requested. Treatment atached, OPR-scanned from the original. The Casablanca people said, and I quote, “F**k half-hour animated special, this is a feature film.”
Shooter then even more graciously supplied me with the actual film treatment, which is far too awesome to post here in its entirety, but as you can imagine, a story that needs to find roles to spotlight the qualities of Donna Summer, Cher, Rodney Dangerfield, Lenny and Squiggy, Robin Williams, the Village People and Kiss, while also guest-starring Spider-Man and the Avengers (not to mention introduce us to Dazzler) is going to be quite “out there,” and this story is no exception!
I will give you a small taste of the awesomeness:
Cut to the throne room of the Witch Queen. Dewey reports that the captives have escaped! It must be the doing of the Queen of Fire: He suggests an all-out confrontation, the Witch Queen herself should lead her Dreadknights and her army into a final vengeful battle. She agrees.
Meanwhile, Howe is advising the Queen of Fire similarly, to gather with her troops and her Stompers in No Man’s Land to settle with the Witch Queen for once and for all.
Here is the cast list:
Cher, as the Witch Queen.
Donna Summer, as the Queen of Fire.
KISS, as the Dreadknights.
Robin Williams, as Tristan.
Rodney Dangerfield, as Dewey, Cheetham, and Howe, and as Lord Chaos,
The Village People, as the Stompers.
Lenny and Squiggy, as the Jesters.
Pretty amazing, eh?
Shooter went on to note that later on (as noted in this previous installment), Bo Derek was attached to the project based on his film treatment, but it all ended up falling apart. However, before it did, Shooter noted that she was interested enough that there is a cover of People featuring the star with a pile of Marvel Comics, and, you know what? There is!
Click on the image to enlarge the awesomeness!
Thanks so much to Jim Shooter, for absolutely blowing my mind with all the info he laid upon me. It’s rare that I have no idea what to expect from an answer, but this sure was one of those occasions!
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