Mark Millar & Leinel Yu’s SuperCrooks

It looks like super-villains are smartening up to the abundance of super-heroes in the United States and headed for a new place to make a living. The recently announced series SuperCrooks finds a group of villains heading out of super-hero city hangouts into the relative quite of the European continent to pull a heist that'll set them up for life.

Described by some as a super-hero version of Ocean's Eleven, this upcoming Marvel/Icon book finds Superior/Ultimate Avengers creators Mark Millar & Leinul Yu coming back together for a creator-owned crime caper that is bound to get Millar fans excited. 

Teased for months, the full details of SuperCrooks debut in Millar's own CLiNT magazine last month, and the writer has rolled out his memorable blend of publicity and hyperbole both in the UK and on American soil. Although CBR garnered an exclusive first-look (and first talk) with the creators last month, with Millar saying the idea was spurred on by wondering why super-villains at Marvel and DC tend to only hit major U.S. cities. Warren Ellis & Stuart Immonen explored this idea narrowly in Nextwave, but SuperCrooks looks to expand this into a super-villain heist movie comic set in Spain.

Although the pair's current title Superior is months overdue with a final issue not planned until the new year, they're already excited about their next big thing. Millar has reportedly already sold the movie rights to the series, with the actual comic not expected to be released until summer 2012. Here's some sketches of the lead characters that ran in CLiNT magazine.




  1. Let’s worry about wrapping up Superior, shall we?

  2. “Millar has reportedly already sold the movie rights to the series”

    And to think I was going to make a joke about who was going to be cast to play them.

    C’Mon! If he wants to write movies why doesn’t he just cut out the middle?! 

  3. An OGN?

  4. @TheNakedGenius  Because it’s easier to hand a studio guy a comic as a pitch. It’s like storyboards and a script put together, they love it apparently

  5. It would be nice for Millar to concentrate on a few stories at one given time instead of spreading himself thin over both Hollywood and the comics industry. Still waiting on War Heroes #3….though I’m pretty sure the movie will be made before he ever gets around to writing it.

  6. bastard = Michael Gambon?

  7. Oh boy another Millar comic that will come out sporadically at best and we never see the end of

  8. The Fog – Tom Cruise
    Kasey Anne -? (Profile view doesn’t reveal much)
    Bastard – Defintely Michael Gambon @ ed209AF
    The Praetorian- ? (Far off)
    TK Mcabe – Justin Timberlake
    Johnny Bolt – Joaquin Phoenix

    Apprently he does his casting this way too. I think it’s a fun concept, but I kind of feel it is (insulting? lame?) that he’s already sold the movie rights. Maybe insulting is the wrong word. I mean, the guy isn’t insulting me.  I guess I just don’t find his actions appealing, and I think it kind of makes him look like an ass. 

  9. Can his next project not be something summed up with “Like this well known property that I don’t own but with a twist”?

  10. This is great

    I  get really tired of Marvel’s everything happens in ny(even though I live there)

    Dare I say- “good on you” ? 

  11. @RoiVampire: Yes, handing someone a comic does essentially give them the script and storyboards right there.

    But the book hasn’t even been made yet. That is my problem. Kick-Ass (which became a great movie) only had like 1 issue out when it was purchased by the studio. That’s ridiculous, but at least there was an issue. He sells his ideas twice, to two mediums, at the same time. That’s messed up. This is why his books take so long to finish. Because before he has them written he’s on the set watching the film get made. Jane Goldman wrote the film based mainly off of Millar’s pitch, not the comic. Why do both? It’s like when they release things like Batman Begins as a comic, just to cash in on it.

    Millar thinks up a crazy, shock-factor-obsessed pitch, then makes a comic to go along with the movie so he can get paid twice.

    If the book was well recieved and people wanted more of it, or a film could do something great with it, then go ahead. But selling it as both a comic and a movie before anyone has even heard of it. That is just ass-ish. I get that his books are cinematic and all, but make up your mind as to which work is in which medium. He should stop having his cake and eating it too.

  12. @RoiVampire  –the people who work in film development..they hate reading. They hire people to do it for them, and then if something is good they read a 2 page coverage and make a decision to read a script based on that. Comics make that whole process so much easier. It really is quite brilliant. 

    @TheNakedGenius  –it seems that you just don’t like capitalism. 

    this notion that indie artists need to be broke and allow publishers/labels/corporations take advantage of them for their work to be authentic is completely stupid.

    Millar has an amazing business sense..its something to learn from and study. 

  13. Millar and Yu make a wonderful team BUT I’ll be dammned if I get excited about their NEXT project when they apparently have no motivation to finish up their LAST one!
    Final issue of Superior not planned till next year? 6mo.’s away? wow
    Umm guys at least PRETEND to care about your followers! 

  14. I can see Millar’s business approach to this and how smart it is. From a money-making standpoint, it is a good idea. I’ve never felt that a creator needed to be “broke” or “allow publishers/labels/corporations” to be authentic. Look at Robert Kirkman. The guy has a hand in his projects being adpated to other medium’s, and as far as we can tell, seem to enjoy the process and make quite the sum of money off of it. I understand that it’s Millar’s ultimate goal to get these made into films, and in that sense he is successful, but it still looks like he is tossing readers secondhand work so he can give a studio exec a beautiful proposal with pictures and stuff courtesy of Lenil Yu.

  15. @wallythegreenmonster: I don’t have the thought process that thinks that truly artistic people all have to be poor and struggling. I just find Millar’s lack of focus and his ‘business sense’ to be rather whore-ish.

    The impression I get from it is sort of as if a guy reviews movies for two different magazines, gets paid for both seperate jobs, and yet gives them both the exact same review.

    Really someone explain to me: Why doesn’t he just make movies?

    If he likes getting paid from them, (and clearly he goes to a studio with a pitch as soon as he goes to a publisher) Why doesn’t he just write them as movies?

    I assume it’s because loves comics, and has written some great ones over the years, but I’m just wondering why we haven’t seen a film of something like The Flash, and yet a comic property that doesn’t even exist yet is already on it’s way as a movie.

    I love comic book film adapts, but I find it odd that the studio, or whoever it is, is making an adaptation of something non-existent.

    I wish he would just chose which ideas are gonna be movies, or which ones comics. At least one medium at a time.

    It’s like fraud or something though, isn’t it? Selling two people the same thing, just because one company will release it as a comic book, and the other as a movie, does that make it any better?

    Obviously there are people who can make both comics and film/TV e.g. Joss Whedon. But he doesn’t sell us the same thing in both forms. That is what truly bothers me, I guess. He’s cashing the same check twice, at the same time.

  16. Millar rules

  17. I swear, if Millar wipes his ass, Hollywood options the stain. They LOVE that guy! I actually don’t mean that to sound like I’m attacking him, I’m totally not. i think it’s great a comic writer is doing so well. The guy knows what Hollywood wants, that’s for sure. Good for you, dude. Keep living the dream!

  18. Did they ever finish Superior? If so, did they just abandon it? I won’t be too broken up about it if they did, but it was fun.

  19. Never mind! I’m a doofus!

  20. Their comics are nothing but a pitch for his hollywood projects.  Now I dont have a problem with this except once he sells the property he doesn’t care about finishing the story ( or rushing it to its end) so he can start pitching his next one.  

    Another great concept that once Hollywood bites he will abandon and start working on his next concept.


  21. Every time this comes up on the page, I read it as “SuperCooks.”  I generally enjoy Millar about as much as a root canal, but even I have to admit that if he wrote a title about a Top Chef-style competition with cooking-related super-powers it would be significantly more enticing than just another “badasses who have problems with authority.”  To quote Dorothy Parker: he “runs the gamut of emotions from A to B.”  Still, SuperCooks?  I’d give that a look.

  22. @TheNakedGenius  JK Rowling sold the film rights to all the Potter movies when they were not finished in their ‘original’ form.  Is she a ‘whore’ too? 

    Or how about the many, many novel adaptations of movies that are released before the movie is.  Aren’t the creators/owners of the movie cashing the same check twice too?

    Simply put movies, TV, books, and comics are all different media.  As such, they all have different ownership rights.  So, no, it isn’t fraud.

    More interestingly, why does the ability of Millar to make a good deal bother you?

  23. come on tk mcabe is pacy from dawsons creek

  24. @ActualButt  I feel the same way. Superior is a great read.

  25. If I could come up with something to sell twice in different mediums, I’d do it in a heartbeat. Millar has it figured out, and we buy it up.

    Luckily, a lot of it is good, but not timely. When does Kick-Ass 2 #3 come out? #2 was in March and it was 3 months late. I think this is kind of insulting, actually.

  26. I would be jumping through the roof right now (Huge Millar and Yu fan) if I had not just wrapped up Ultimate Avengers vs Ultimates. That series was awful.

    However, being that Wanted is still one of my favorite books of all time, I got that vibe from this and makes me sold.

    @clocwrk – War Heroes #3 is out. Been out. The rest of the series though is totally MIA.

  27. Millar hating band wagon, comic collectors just like many mediums jump on band wagons of trashing someone cause it became a trend, the guy put out plenty of good works on time and if he wants to make money off the movie too, who cares? Jealous? In the end I guess I just feel these creators/writers/artists don’t owe us anything other than our money’s worth which i’ve got out of Millar and don’t care about his personal situation, views or otherwise, doesn’t mean I won’t comment on or listen to them. And books coming out on time doesn’t really bother me as I like a lot of titles and it gives me time to catch up with other stuff and anticipate the hiatus books but what does blow is when they don’t finish a run, so I agree with the complaints there but am just tired of trendy reactions to appear on top of whats going on.

  28. well said @jsakid

  29. Yes, you must be a zombie for disliking something! It cant be that you find badly written, distasteful comics to be badly written and distasteful.

  30. @MisterJ: No I don’t find Rowling whore-ish. Seriously I get it, everything gets adapted these days. But the thing is, there isn’t anything to adapt. That’s what gets me.

    He hasn’t really sold the rights to adapt the book, he’s just sold his single script twice. Once the comic is a property, adapt away. But until there is a comic, it’s not an adaptation. (In my mind) It’s fraud.

    Not all of the Potter books were completed before the movies began, but each book was completed and published before it’s related film was in development/made. And at least the books were a recognized property of their own, not just film tie-ins.

  31. @TheNakedGenius:  I think I get what you’re trying to say.  It’s the “do the poop or get off the pot” scenario:  make good comics for your money-spending fans, then worry about movies later.  It’s almost as if we, the fans, are being taken advantage of; we’re expected to shell-out $2.99 + for books that can’t come out on time, written by a guy who seems more interested in selling movie rights than making comics worth keeping up with.  However, the truth is, if he can double-dip and get paid for both, that’s his prerogative.  Yeah, it may leave some of us feeling like we’re second-fiddle mistresses to his divine lady Hollywood, but that’s not HIS problem.  His problem is now about selling more ideas and getting PAID.  Really, all we can do is speak with or wallets;  if we don’t like his practices, we can stop buying his books, and we don’t have to go see his movies.  I’m not sticking around for the rest of Superior, and I’m about ready to drop Kick-Ass 2 (I don’t think I can do that to JRJr, though).  Nemesis 2 isn’t going to have a home in my long box, and I have no interest in Supercrooks, comic, movie, or otherwise.

  32. @TheNakedGenius  I understand what you are trying to say, but I don’t think “fraud” is the right word to describe it.

  33. Millar has a good business sense, I don’t fault him for that at all.  

    What I question though is how GOOD is work really though?  If your vision of your property is immediately precipitated by thoughts of “Movie… video game… lunch box… bobbleheads…” then you have to wonder how much of the creative process takes into account ‘pop’.  Even Todd McFarlane was never that broad… Spawn was created as your a-typical 90s blockbuster COMIC BOOK.  All the othe stuff… movies… games… came later.  Millar is trying to create packages with all that in mind first.

    If guys like Ennis or Frank Miller or Alan Moore took the same approach, we would NEVER have the wonderful stories they’ve made.  300? Awesome.  300 sequel created with a movie in mind?  Probably not going to be as good or epic.  And you know everyone is thinking that.

    And hey, wasn’t Nemesis Millar’s anti-hero book?  I guess if it don’t work the first time, try again as a team. 

    I think Millar brings something to the table in regards to the comic industry, I just don’t think its necessarily great work that will be remembered 20 or 50 years from now. 

  34. @ JSAkid

    I didn’t even KNOW there was an anti-Millar bandwagon.  From everything I read and what all my friends talk about, it seemed like to me that Millar was wunderkind writer who was the greatest thing to comics since Alan Moore.  Then I go read some Millar comics and wasn’t all that impressed.  Some are very entertaining and fun… I like Kick-Ass.  Old Man Logan was not exactly an original concept, but execution was fun and it was a good read. I like Ulimates.  Clint is a wonderful publication.  But then I pick up Nemesis and its pure garbage.

    Same goes for Kirkman if you want me to be fair.  I LOVE Walking Dead.  Its one of the best ongoing stories ever.  Then I go try to read some other Kirkman works and immediately I realize, “Ok, I’ll just stick to Walking Dead, thanks”. 

  35. it seems that most objections are him not finishing is comics. Thats fair, and thats just bad business. Even if your intent was to create a 5 issue mini to get optioned, finishing the story would create goodwill with comics fans and enable you to build a very loyal fanbase. 

    @TheNakedGenius — a very large amount of movies are sold as pitches or treatments..nothing more than a few pages of plot outline, so in that sense a comic is no different. 

  36. Is that Nikki Rhoads’ tattoo?

  37. @TheNakedGenius  So you cannot conceptualize that an idea can be adapted?

    Further, since he is self-publishing now, he only sold one thing, so there’s that….

  38. There is precedent for a book being made roughly at the same time as the movie “adapting” it but, of course, Mark Millar is no Arthur C. Clarke.  I think Millar has always been good for a premise but usually slips up in the execution.

  39. @Tork That’s the best way to ever describe Millar:

    “Millar has always been good for a premise but usually slips up in execution.”

    Old Man Logan? Good idea (overdone idea at least). Wanted? Good idea but ended poorly (literally too). Kick-Ass? Good idea but at the end of the day it was nothing but people swearing and fighting for 8 issues.

    Unlike those books though this seems like an idea that’s been done before. If no one has ever done this before I’d be shocked. (I just can’t think of a specific story that has at the moment) 

  40. @Tork  You;re right.  He impressed me with Ultimates 1 and 2 enough that I went to check his other books out, but with the exception of Old Man Logan, it seems like his ideas are his real selling points, not his actual finished work.

  41. Mark Millar is always about ‘big’ ideas, but his actual writing skill is not good at all. A lot of his stories can be traced to movies and other media. First one off the top of my head is Nemesis, which was pretty much an alternate version of the movie Hostel (Rich guys pay lots of money to do sick, twisted, evil things.) His run of Civil War was a concept already touched upon in Watchmen, and again in the Incredibles.

    As a matter of fact, I think that the delay on Superior is mostly due to Millar not knowing how to end the story (cause he likes to throw curve balls in at the end).

    I would also like to state that Kick-ass the movie was BETTER than the comic. How often does that happen?