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Burnham, Schoening, and Delgado Talk “Transformers/ Ghostbusters” Crossover

It’s been years in the making, and decades of desire, but we finally have the most epic ’80’s crossover coming our way – and in comic form no less! Later this summer, IDW will be releasing a mini-series event featuring the Ghostbusters meeting the Transformers. As if that was not enough, we also have an official Hasbro toy to make this mash-up even sweeter – Ectotron!

Writer Erik Burnham, Artist Dan Schoening, and Colorist Luis Antonio Delgado just did an extensive interview, where they spoke about how this series came to be, and what fans can expect – as well as a few surprises they should be ready for!

Here is the interview below, courtesy of IDW:

When you were initially approached by IDW Publishing to be part of the TRANSFORMERS / GHOSTBUSTERS crossover, what was your first reaction?

ERIK BURNHAM: Oh, there was a delayed double-take. The TRANSFORMERS property is something that a reliable section of fans has asked about us playing around with (with GHOSTBUSTERS or otherwise) ever since the first TMNT/GB crossover five years back. I wondered if the TRANSFORMERS universe would be as fun of a sandbox as GHOSTBUSTERS for us to play in – spoilers, it totally is.

LUIS ANTONIO DELGADO: Excitement! I’ve been working with IDW for 11 years and I’ve worked on pretty much all the properties I grew up with. The one I was still dreaming of being a part of was TRANSFORMERS, and to do it combined with my favorite team, the Ghostbusters, was everything I could’ve wanted. Besides, I already knew Erik was gonna come with a fantastic way to get both of them together (already did it once with TMNT), so I couldn’t wait to read the story.

DAN SCHOENING: Very surprised! I never thought I’d get the opportunity to draw the TRANSFORMERS bots in a comic, let alone a team up with the Ghostbusters.

Dan, you’ve been the artist for IDW’s GHOSTBUSTERS series for many years now, and took on the gig with well-established experience drawing the characters. But was this your first time delving into the TRANSFORMERS universe? If so, were there any unique complexities to drawing the Robots in Disguise?

DAN: Aside from a few sketches for fun, this will be my first time tackling a lot of the TRANSFORMERS characters. Being a child of the 80’s, my heart always goes back to the animated series that started in ’84 and the ’86 motion picture. For the crossover, I’ll be keeping the look of the Autobots and Decepticons within that established aesthetic. Having them in the animated style also blends very well with the visual style we have created for the Ghostbusters over the past 8 years.


Luis, with so many different characters appearing on the cover art and within the story pages, how do you keep track of the proper colors to use for each, and did it require a lot of research on your part to get all the TRANSFORMERS details right?

LUIS: It is a huge challenge. When it comes to GB, I know the guys and their gear better than I could ever imagined I would, but the TRANSFORMERS bots are a different story—there are so many and they are so complex that it is a bit scary. Dan is the real genius behind all the art, not only the pencils, he did all the research so he could be true to the mythos and he was kind enough to share that research; so after a couple of misfires, I managed to get all the robots’ features right and now I have multiple files ready for when I have to work on them.

Erik, you have a reputation for being a writer who accurately depicts the voices of many of pop-culture’s most beloved and recognizable characters. Did you find it more difficult to put words into Optimus Prime’s mouth than, say, Peter Venkman’s? Do you ever pretend to do their voices out loud when you write? 

ERIK: The voice is the goal, and … yeah, I might do the voices out loud from time to time. It only gets weird since I work in coffee shops an awful lot. As far as putting words into Optimus Prime’s mouth… Peter Cullen’s voice is so strong and distinct (to say nothing of Frank Welker or Chris Latta or…) I have no trouble hearing those performances in my head. Makes them as easy to write as the Ghostbusters. And I hope those voices come through to the fans just as easily, knock wood.


Dan, who is your favorite Ghostbuster to draw? Favorite TRANSFORMERS bot? Are there any characters you dread having to illustrate?
 
DAN: My favorite Ghostbuster is Ray, and he’s also my favorite to draw. As for a TRANSFORMERS bot, my favorite is Mirage, with Perceptor in a close second. I can’t say I’m dreading drawing any, however, each one presents their own unique challenges. Finding where the joints move in particular, such as elbows and knees, is something I’m looking to improve upon as I move ahead.


Erik, what can you tell us about Ectotron, the new Autobot being introduced in this crossover? 
 
ERIK: Well… he is a bit of a nerd. He’s almost as far out there for the Autobots as the Ghostbusters were from other academics here on Earth. He’s kind of uptight, and he’s teased by the other Autobots. But he’ll loosen up by the end of the story.
 
 
After all these years working on GHOSTBUSTERS, tell us: does ‘busting still make you feel good?
 
ERIK: 100% yes. I love these characters and this world still. We’ve pitched lots of other ideas, and with luck, the coming movies will keep the interest up in both the GHOSTBUSTERS multiverse and us playing within it for a good long while.
 
LUIS: It makes me feel excited every single day. I’m not only lucky to do this job, I’m even more lucky to do it with a property that I loved since I was a kid and with the best team in the world. I enjoy working on every new ghost, every new story, and every new challenge. Besides, trying to keep it fresh and new after so many issues, that’s what makes it exciting.
 
DAN: I’ll answer you with a question 🙂 Does Peter Venkman like money?
 
 
If you had to choose, would you be an Autobot or a Decepticon? Why?
 
ERIK: I mean, come on. I don’t want to be EVIL. But on the other hand, most of the Decepticons are able to fly. But on the OTHER other hand… Dinobots. Going Autobot, final answer.
 
LUIS: Autobot for sure. I like their ideals, I like how they always try to do the right thing and fight for the little guy. When you have so much power, it’s a great responsibility (I think I heard that somewhere before).
 
DAN: Definitely an Autobot. Who wouldn’t want to help save the Earth with Optimus Prime? As for a vehicle mode, I’d have to go with a DeLorean.
 
 
Erik, what can longtime fans of both franchises expect going into this crossover?
 
ERIK: Here’s the thing – I like a little comedy with the action, and I was wondering if Hasbro was going to ask for a very stoic interpretation of the TRANSFORMERS property, leaving the silliness to the Ghostbusters… but no. I get to have fun with the bots! Nothing wildly out of character, mind you, but Optimus Prime is gonna be as able to crack a joke as Venkman, if the situation arises. It’s gonna be about fun. Lots of fun. And I guarantee the series starts in a way no one will expect – it made me smile to write, and Dan & Luis knocked it out of the park on the page. It’s the kind of toybox mashup we did as kids! The TL;DR of it: a fun time with the boys in grey and the robots in disguise dealing with some ghostly common enemies!

Anything else you want to share with the fans and retailers?

ERIK: Oh, tons. But IDW and Hasbro have ninjas in place to keep me from doing so. Suffice it to say: there’s gonna be love letters and easter eggs aplenty for readers to find, and wait’ll you get to issue 3, where we—[redacted by ninjas, Erik should be fine. Well, fine-ish.]

LUIS: Just be ready for a story you never thought was possible, join the party, and enjoy the ride. I promise, it’s gonna be more than worth it.

DAN: Ever since I received my first TRANSFORMERS action figure back in the early ‘80s (Soundwave), I’ve been a big fan of the property. It’s an honor to help bring these characters together, while telling a fun and visually engaging story all the fans will enjoy.

This interview came via a press release from IDW.

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IDW Celebrates the Ghostbusters 35th Anniversary with Weekly Comic Book Event in April

Are you troubled by strange noises in the night? Do you experience feelings of dread in your basement or attic? Have you or your family actually seen a spook, specter, or ghost? If the answer is yes, then four fearless Ghostbuster teams are here to serve your supernatural elimination needs, courtesy of IDW!

In celebration of the 35th anniversary of Ghostbusters, IDW Publishing will release a different Ghostbusters comic weekly in April, each focusing on a different team, including the original “Prime” team from the classic film, the Real Ghostbusters of 1980s cartoon fame, the all-female team that “Answered the Call” in 2016, and the next generation of Extreme Ghostbusters!

“Since 2008, IDW has published an amazing library of ‘Busters from multiple dimensions and times, written and illustrated by a diverse crew of mega-talented creators… so what better way is there to celebrate this special anniversary than by showing off the eclectic cast from Ghostbusters projects far and wide?” says Senior Editor Tom Waltz. “Fans, old and new, can again expect the best of the best in full four-color, SLIMERRIFIC glory!”

IDW Editor-in-Chief John Barber says, “Ghostbusters has been an important part of IDW Publishing for more than a decade, and thanks to everybody at Sony and Ghost Corps, it’s been an amazing eleven years. With Ghostbusters hitting such a milestone anniversary, it’s time to celebrate every facet of the team’s history… and to get ready for everything that’s coming next!”

April 2019’s Ghostbusters one-shot specials include:

Ghostbusters 35th Anniversary: Ghostbusters
by Erik Burnham (writer) and Dan Schoening (artist)
First out of the Firehouse are the original ‘busting team of Peter, Winston, Egon and Ray, who have seen a lot of things during their time as paranormal investigators, but the latest case might just turn history on its head! Could it be that they’ve found proof of… Atlantis?

Ghostbusters 35th Anniversary: Real Ghostbusters
by Cavan Scott (writer) and Marcelo Ferreira (artist)
The Real Ghostbusters keep losing business to a flashy new rival ghost-catching company: SPOOKS AWAY! But there’s something sinister in the neighborhood, and it’s up to Ray Stantz to go undercover to find out who—or what is behind these new supernatural elimination superstars!

Ghostbusters 35th Anniversary: Answer The Call Ghostbusters
by Devin Grayson (writer) and S.L. Gallant (artist)
Do demons get visitation rights? A harried young mother tries to accommodate a stream of otherworldly visitors, intent on paying their respects to her half-demon toddler, and Erin, Abby, Patty, and Holtzman find themselves mediating the custody battle from hell!

Ghostbusters 35th Anniversary: Extreme Ghostbusters
by Jim Beard and Keith Dallas (writers), and Tim Lattie (artist)
Ever wish you could talk to animals? Well, when the furry, feathered, and finny inhabitants of the Central Park Zoo star demanding their release, the people of New York just wish they’d shut up! It’s up to Egon and his Extreme Ghostbusters to free the beasts from their fiendish possession!

The announcement of IDW’s Ghostbusters 35th Anniversary comic book event follows news of a planned Ghostbusters film sequel slated for 2020, set within the continuity of the original two films. Fans of IDW’s “prime” Ghostbusters line should take heart that the original team will return in new adventures leading up to the motion picture.

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Ghostbusters 101: EVERYONE Answers the Call – The “Answer the Call” crew work alongside the original ‘busters in New Graphic Novel Collection

Dohhh-Reyyy-Egonnnnnnn – all the Ghostbusters are back in Ghostbusters 101: Everyone Answers the Call, a trade collection of all six issues now available for purchase!

After making their cinematic debut last summer, the latest iteration of Ghostbusters answered a new call in 2017 – appearing for the first time alongside the original Ghostbusters in Ghostbusters 101, resulting in a sold out debut due to overwhelming demand.

In this new adventure, the ghostbusting team of Holtzmann, Yates, Tolan, and Gilbert cross paths with Venkman, Stantz, Zeddemore, and Spengler, set in the long-running IDW continuity from the fan-favorite, critically-acclaimed, and prolific Ghostbusters comics creative team of Erik Burnham, Dan Schoening, and Luis Antonio Delgado who have collaborated on the IDW comics for the past five years. In addition, the new collection also features a special introduction by director Paul Feig.

Ivan Reitman, Co-founder of Ghost Corps, in addition to director of the original films, said about the comic book event series, “I’ve always wanted to meld the two worlds. I think it’s important for the future that we bring it back into a single universe.”

When an inter-dimensional mishap merges together the Ghostbusters’ universe with that of the new crew of paranormal police, the fate of two dimensions (maybe more?!) hangs in the balance. Can these distinctly different teams come together to repel the greatest supernatural challenge any of them have ever faced? They’re going to have to find a way if there’s any hope for survival. Prepare for mass hysteria of the dogs and cats living together variety, because this time everyone… ANSWERS THE CALL!

Ghostbusters 101: Everyone Answers the Call is in comic shops and bookstores now.

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