The Return of the Shadow

Digital Spy has picked up on a Hollywood Reporter item that Sam (Evil Dead, Spider-Man) Raimi is to produce a new big screen adaptation of The Shadow after Columbia Pictures bought the rights to the heroic character. He apparently won’t direct this latest version featuring the adventures of the 1930s crimefighter, who has the power to cloud the minds of his adversaries.

Created by Walter B Gibson, the Shadow originated as a CBS radio show in 1931 and featured in over 300 pulp magazine stories, according to the Shadow in Review web site. I quite liked the 1994 film starring Alec Baldwin (it was directed by Russell Highlander Mulcahy and had plenty of visual panache) but I was in a minority – the film bombed at the US box office, taking just over $32 million, which didn’t recoup the estimated $40 million budget.

I’m sure that after Peter Jackson’s King Kong Hollywood execs will recognise it’s possible to set a film in the era in which the source material was created and still provide a relevance for the modern audience (just as the BBC’s underestimated Robin Hood series is doing).

Digging around, I’ve come across some great web sites devoted to the character, as well as the inevitable Wikipedia entry. The Shadow Sanctum ( offers more information on the plans for the new movie and seems to offer a good range of background reference and new interpretations on the character from his many fans.

The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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