Fuel on the Fire: Tim Daniel Enormous Interview Part 2

I have had the pleasure of talking to Tim for a couple of months now in reference to getting the Comicsheatingup.net variants done, and he was instrumental in the design and art direction on the cover. He is also a pretty awesome guy. Kelly H. interviewed him for CHU back in July 2014 which you can find here. As soon as the news broke of the Enormous TV show, I fired up the lap top and contacted Tim for an interview. Here is our back and forth.

CHU– Tim, first congrats, how excited are you as a creator to see this?
Tim Daniel– Thank you Anthony. Yes, I’m very excited to see Enormous take this next step as much for myself as I am for the book’s co-creator and artist Mehdi Cheggour. We’ve been at this together now for four years and it’s been a big investment of his time and talent. He told me recently, that he might well be the only comic book illustrator in all of North Africa, being that he’s based in Morocco and that his decision to pursue this profession was a huge risk. I’m thrilled for everyone involved – Matthew Meylikhov, our letterer, and Bess Pallares, our editor. Of course, I’m also gratified that our publishers, 215INK have seen their decision recognized as well. Michael Perkins and Andrew DelQuadro backed us by taking Enormous and allowing it to be published in an ongoing fashion as the story was originally conceived.
What’s really exciting is, Enormous is yet another dot on the radar helping to shape the rapidly evolving perception of creator-owned comic books. Every time a book from the independent market performs well sales-wise, garners critical recognition or gets an option for development, that’s a good thing for a lot of people who are tirelessly pouring their heart, talent and time into their stories.
CHU– Obviously we are excited for you and have been supporting the book since the beginning. So, TV, how did this come about?
TD– Producer Adrian Askarieh of Prime Universe Films, who became involved with Enormous when it first debuted at SDCC in 2012, is responsible for presenting the material to Andrew Plotkin at New Regency and they’re responsible for putting together the partnership with Fox.
The idea of Enormous as a television show, a potentially reoccurring event series, is their vision and one that I was particularly excited by because the format lends itself to smartly focused story-telling and a powerfully concentrated viewing experience.
CHU– You have been dropping hints that something was coming up for a while, which we kept giving tips on, but how long has this been in the works?
TD– For several months, but the step from web short film to television was a part of a plan that Adrian shared with me the very first time we spoke back in 2012. He’s made good!
CHU– Since you mentioned the web short, will there be any carry over from the web short that came out a while ago? Actors and such.
TD– Not to my knowledge. And frankly, I can’t be trusted with those types of decisions anyway. I’m a pretty sentimental guy, at least I like to think I am, and I really loved that cast and crew. They were all very dedicated and intensely focused for a extremely short period of time to make that short film happen. I’m eternally grateful to them all for that experience.
CHU– How far along is the process and any idea when this may air?
TD– We’ve had discussions at this point. Meetings via telephone, exploratory and informational. I’ve revealed everything I know and have planned for Enormous the comic book series, including the end. There is an active search for both a showrunner and writer(s). At this date, I do not know when production would start. Need a script first.
CHU-Once the script is done, how faithful of an adaptation will this be? Too early to say?
TD-Not too early to say, though I want Enormous the TV show to be tailored towards the television viewer and never present itself as a rigid retelling of the comic book. I’d like the comic to have that unique space as well. Both versions of the story should be unburdened from the other so that they can each be the best possible versions of themselves. I am greatly inspired though by how Adrian and Andrew have listened, responded to and shared their ideas of how they see the material. Those discussions have been the best part of the experience thus far because we had some immediate consensus.
CHU– The comic series focuses on the characters, but a big draw are the Enormous themselves, any talk yet on how they will be brought to life?
TD– Miniatures with those little rubbery finger tip puppets. Nothing beats practical effects, right?
But aside from that little bit of movie magic, your question raised the most important point which is the need for very strong characters. I think everyone would agree that the comic and the show can’t be a monster-of-the-week treadmill exercise – repeating certain thrills to diminishing effect. That would wear out it’s welcome pretty fast, even with me. We’ve tried to be judicious in the book with the use of the beasts, and I hope the show can achieve a similar balance of character development and pure visceral action.
CHU– Ok so besides monsters, any discussion on location for shooting?
TD– Not at this point, at least not with me. I’d sure love to see a real desert though. I enjoyed that about Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, seeing New Mexico so beautifully shot. In a story like Enormous that involves a lot of nature, and one that has a lot to say about our tampering with it, seeing the real desert would give viewers a strong sense of place. Plus the desert looks kick ass on camera. It’s such an epic, often alien landscape, one I chose for the book for that very reason.
CHU– How involved will you be in the making of the show?
TD– As involved as they’ll allow me to be. Thus far, I’ve been urged to participate. I’ll accept that offer for as long as it’s extended. I’m very grateful for that opportunity. I’d like to hope that I have something constructive to contribute and I’ll admit, I’ve fallen in love with the experience already.
CHU-So, I am an accomplished background actor and extra with actual credits on IMDb (but it needs to be updated.) So, can you make it happen? You know……
TD– So am I! I was in the Walking Dead pilot – the only zombie wearing a hat. Look for me in downtown Atlanta chasing Rick and trying to eat his horse. I was “hunter zombie” – dressed in all green with a green hunting cap and I’m briefly visible a handful of times. One of my fellow extras, Scott McPherson, has been my friend since, and we used him as a life model for James Coyle in the original Enormous One Shot. All of that happened because of the generosity of Robert Kirkman and David Alpert. It’d be cool if I had the chance to do the same thing for folks that have supported Enormous, your accomplished self included perhaps? So if we don’t by chance make it past security, Mehdi and I can always draw you into the book!
Thanks Tim, I am cool with getting squashed by a gigantic monster either on screen or in the book, let me know!

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