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Fresh back to their news-minting computers from a two day trip to New Orleans and the set of Dead of Night, Shock Till You Drop have posted the first image of Brandon Routh as the film’s hero, Dylan Dog. I’ve excerpted it above, but real fans will want to see his shirt collar (for reasons that may become clear as you read on). Over at Movieweb, meanwhile, they have the first picture of Sam Huntington as Marcus, Dylan’s undead sidekick who I don’t recall from the few reads I ever managed to steal of the original books when I was working in a comics shop.

For those not up on the euro-comics, Dylan is the eponymous lead of Tiziani Sclavi‘s horror comics. He’s a kind of horror detective, often referred to as a nightmare investigator, and he’s always running into ghouls and ghosts and hairy, gory, goopy things. In the comic he lives in London but for the film he’s been relocated. Indeed, the first line of the screenplay reads “The unmistakable skyline of New York City”.

I thought Routh was a great Superman but this young man has a lot of haters out there, and I fear this film won’t do much to convert them. For one thing, that previously mentioned screenplay read like a telephone directory (maybe it was an out of date draft…?) and director Kevin Munroe not only has no live action features under his belt but I found the drama in his CGI TMNT to be, at its very best, perfunctory. I fear that we’re in for no more than a modicum of style and an utter lack of substance.

The image of Dylan Dog was based upon the actor Rupert Everett. To confuse matters somewhat, the comic features a character called Francesco Dellamorte, a kind of Italian opposite number for Dylan and when he was given a movie of his own, he was played by Everett. As if to just throw another log of baffle on the fire, Everett was dressed in a costume that mimicked Dylan Dog’s typical get up in the strip (and, for that matter, this picture of Routh, hence the collar comment). Screwy.

That film was Dellamorte Dellamore, released in the US as Cemetery Man and directed by Michele Soavi. I’m a big fan and would seriously recommend you give it a spin.

Alongside Routh and Huntington, Munroe’s Dead of Night picture will also feature Taye Diggs and, best of all, Peter Stormare and Kurt Angle as a pair of werewolves.

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