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Tony Puryear wrote the 1996 Arnold Schwarzenegger smash Eraser, becoming the first African American screenwriter to pen a $100 million summer blockbuster. He has written action and sci-fi scripts for a who’s who of Hollywood A listers, from Will Smith to Mel Gibson to Jerry Bruckheimer, and adapted storied sci-fi properties like Fahrenheit 451 and Buck Rogers for the big screen. Now he brings that Hollywood horsepower to the world of graphic novels.
Concrete Park, Tony Puryear’s first comics project, appears in Dark Horse Presents #8 from Dark Horse Comics, the premier independent comics publisher. “Concrete Park is a sprawling epic,” Puryear says.
“It’s the sci-fi story I’ve been waiting to tell. It’s a perfect fit with Dark Horse Presents, the legendary anthology comic that served as a launch pad for innovative work by the biggest names in comics, including Frank Miller (Sin City, 300) and Mike Mignola (Hellboy). I’m honored to be in the company of these amazing world builders, and happy Mike Richardson of Dark Horse believes Concrete Park belongs with them.”
Richardson says, simply, “I love this strip.”
Concrete Park is a dark and provocative near-future story. It takes place in a turbulent mega-city on a distant desert planet (think Cairo or Rio in space). Young human exiles from Earth must fight to make a new world there. They are “young, violent and ten billion miles from home.”
In its ambitious scope, it resembles nothing so much as George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, but with favelas and aliens, cops and cyborgs, ghettos and gangs, instead of castles and armies.
Concrete Park was cocreated by Puryear and his wife, actress Erika Alexander (Living Single, Déjà Vu), and her brother, writer Robert Alexander. Puryear handles the writing and art chores on the book, and in a refreshing twist for someone known as a writer, it’s his art that has drawn the most initial acclaim.
Read About Comics said, “[Puryear’s] art . . . instantly grabbed my attention. His thick, heavy inks are striking, forming his characters with a great deal of confidence and force. Through his art, you instantly get a feel for this near-future [city]; the swagger of his characters and their surroundings just bursts off of the page.”
About Tony Puryear
Tony Puryear is the first African American screenwriter to write a $100 million summer movie blockbuster. His 1996 hit Eraser catapulted him into a career writing pictures for A listers Jerry Bruckheimer (Buck Rogers), Will Smith, and Oliver Stone. Puryear’s adaptation of the Ray Bradbury classic Fahrenheit 451 for Oscar-winning director Mel Gibson has circulated in Hollywood for years as a legendary unproduced script. His latest script is Lady Scarface for the new RKO Pictures.
A talented artist and designer, Puryear was recently honored when his official campaign poster for Hillary Clinton’s historic 2008 presidential run was added to the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery.
He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, actress and Concrete Park cocreator Erika Alexander.