It seems only natural that director Guillermo Del Toro would feel at home partnering with Sideshow to release collectible products based on his upcoming film, Hellboy. Both Del Toro and Sideshow began their entry into movies through the makeup and effects aspects of movie making.
Director Guillermo Del Toro
Born and raised in Guadalajara, Mexico, in 1964, Guillermo Del Toro, learned about makeup and effects from The Exorcist's Dick Smith. Del Toro executive produced his first feature film at age 21 and formed his own makeup and effects company in the early 80's. He also co-founded the Guadalajara-based Mexican Film Festival and that city's Film Studies Center. Remarkably, he was named one of Time magazine's 50 Young Leaders for the New Millennium before he made his third film.
Del Toro's films include Cronos (1992), Mimic (1997), The Devil's Backbone (2001), Blade II (2002) and Hellboy, to be released in 2004. He has received the critic's prize at the Cannes Film Festival, and served on the selection committees for the Sundance Film Festival and the Independent Spirit Awards. He has been recognized at many international film festivals in several categories, including Best Direction, Best First Work and Best Screenplay. He is credited with contributions to various films in the areas of directing, special makeup effects, writing and screenwriting, executive producing and acting.
Hellboy was originally created by artist Mike Mignola and published by Dark Horse Comics. The film version is scheduled for release in April 2004 as a Revolution Studios production. Ron Pearlman will be transformed into Hellboy by six-time Oscar winning effects artist Rick Baker. Del Toro made the commitment early on to stay true to the comic book character, which is one of his favorites. He stated that he envisioned Hellboy as "The Last Emperor" of monster movies, emphasizing his desire to simply tell the world about the comic book creature that he loved and the story he cared about.
Hellboy, now the world's greatest paranormal investigator, was originally brought to Earth, by Hitler's team of demonic scientists in 1941. On October 9, 1944, during a battle between a brave battalion of Allied forces and Hitler's agents of chaos, the world nearly ended, consumed by the flames of Hell. The battalion had a secret weapon, Trevor Bruttenholm, "Broom," an expert in the mysteries of the occult who headed up the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense (BPRD). Just as the Allies claimed victory, an infernal rift broke open in the ground, and Broom was delighted to discover a horned red devil baby among the brimstone. It smiled at him and he smiled back. The Allied soldiers, the BPRD and the world had a new friend - Hellboy. "He was born a demon - we must do our best to make him a man," declared Bruttenholm.
Mike Mignola's artistic vision will be brought to life on the big screen by Guillermo Del Toro and then again in collectible form by Sideshow. Sideshow Collectibles has secured the licenses to produce a wide range of products including 12" and 18" figures, 1/3 scale polystone busts, film study maquettes and prop replicas, as well as framed collectibles. Sideshow will be working closely with Spectral Motion, the effects facility responsible for creature and make-up effects for the film.
As part of Sideshow's 12" figure line, the company will be doing Hellboy, Abe Sapien and Kronen figures. These figures will be limited editions and average $40 to $50 in suggested retail price. In addition, Sideshow will be creating a deluxe version 18" figure of Hellboy that will be extremely limited and retail for more than $200.
Working from the maquettes created by the artists of Spectral Motion, Sideshow will create one-third scale polystone busts of Hellboy and The Corpse, Abe Sapien and Samhael. The busts will be mounted on polystone bases and feature the official BPRD logo. The projected price range will be $60 and $80 with a limited edition size of 1,000-2,000 pieces.
Because the weaponry is such an intricate part of the Hellboy story, Sideshow plans to include functioning 1:1 scale metal replicas of the Hellboy revolver and a Kronen Nazi sword and knife display as part of its line of props to be offered. These replicas will be highly detailed and authentic representations of what was used on the film and will be produced in extremely limited quantities.
Working directly with Mike Mignola, Sideshow will create framed collectibles that will incorporate actual design illustrations as well as production photographs. The framed collectibles will be in edition sizes of 250 to 400 pieces with a suggested retail price of between $300 to $450.
As a special tribute to Guillermo Del Toro, Sideshow will also be releasing a very rare statue and DVD set based on the critically acclaimed Del Toro film, "The Devil's Backbone." Gary Hunt of Weta Workshop has beautifully captured the melancholy expression of one of the more captivating and gruesome characters of the film, "Santi," a boy murdered at the haunted Santa Lucia School for orphaned boys who reappears to its current inhabitants in ghostly form. This item's release will coincide with the introduction of the products from Hellboy which will present collectors with a unique opportunity to own products from both Del Toro properties.