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Feb
2024
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Chicago’s Curtis Matzke Ready to Spin Screenplay ‘Sea Dogs’ Into a Thrilling Graphic Novel

Chicago filmmaker and screenwriter Curtis Matzke’s screenplays have led to award-winning and compelling work on the big screen, namely his films Sink and The Orchestra. Matzke’s next screenplay will be seeking a different path. Curtis has launched a fundraising campaign to adapt his feature screenplay Sea Dogs into a rip-roaring and exciting new graphic novel. In an IP-driven world, Matzke hopes to gain momentum for the idea in this new format and uncover a passionate comic book audience.

First things first, you can click right here to contribute to Curtis’ fundraising campaign, which runs through February 17th.

Next, let’s turn it over to Curtis to introduce you to his graphic novel in development…

Originally conceived during the height of the pandemic, Sea Dogs is a modern reimagining of the pirate and werewolf genres that follows a group of passengers on a small cruise ship who must survive the night when a team of Somali pirates board their ship and turn into ravenous werewolves once the sun is down. Though Matzke remains passionate about one day telling this story as an uproarious adventure film, he is excited to see it come to life as a comic, which he believes may even be how the story was meant to be told. 

The screenplay has been well-received at competitions and even hailed as “well-paced and well-structured” by the Slamdance Film Festival. After advancing to the Second Round of the Austin Film Festival, one reader said, “The concept is weird, and it’s brilliant.”

“Though Sea Dogs is full of pulpy fun, it focuses on complex relationships that address contemporary themes of class, poverty, and race as a satirical survival story that feels relevant to our world,” Matzke shared with SCREEN.

The campaign runs on IndieGoGo until February 17th. Funds will cover the cost of the artist, printing, and distribution of the graphic novel with the goal of releasing physical copies by the end of the year.

In addition to working on Sea Dogs, Matzke is currently working on several Chicago-based narrative and documentary feature productions and will next be seen moderating a panel on artist residencies and retreats at the South by Southwest Film Festival in March.

Be sure to check back here at SCREEN Magazine for the latest from the creative community in Chicago and the Midwest. You can also click right here to subscribe to our weekly email newsletter.

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