Most people know Alexis Cruz as the actor who brought the character of Skaara to life in the “Stargate” movie and “Stargate SG-1″ TV series. He is now developing a graphic novel, “The Unprofessionals: A Sociopathic Bromance,” with childhood friend Colin Rankine.
Cruz appeared at Dallas Sci-Fi Expo and I took the opportunity to participate in a question and answer session with the enthusiastic actor.
You mentioned you’re working on a graphic novel. Tell us about it.
We actually started this last year. I’ve been a comic enthusiast for most of my life. I’m a geek. I grew up that way. [It was] before I was cool. My best friend is one of the best writers I’ve ever known. That’s saying a lot. I’ve been in my industry as an actor for almost 30 years. I started when I was a little kid.
He’s really a terrific writer but he never became a professional one. He’s been working in his craft that long. I’ve had a lot of faith in him since we were kids. It came about time in our careers and at our age that I wanted to start striking out. As a creator of many things, it’s a perfect time for independent projects to flourish. There are so many outlets and ways to do it. You just have to be clever and go about it [the right way]. I convinced him to come out of his basement and let me produce his script.
What’s the name of the book? What’s it about?
He had a lot of ideas. I decided on this one story called “The Unprofessionals: A Sociopathic Bromance.” Our actual logline is, “Everyone says you should live your dreams; but when your dream is to be an awesome ninja assassin you can get into a lot of trouble.”
These two best friends from college, Jake and Leo, have this dream to stand out from the status quo and become something. They want to be hit men, but they have no idea what they’re doing. Murder is an art form to them. It’s like a form of street theater. There’s something glamorous in all these intricate plans that Leo wants to make. You see those sculptures like a little ball rolling down the thing and then it hits the pan and all that stuff. This is how he creates things. That’s how he thinks the game is.
He finds out it’s not like that at all. It’s actually all about sneaking up on someone and shooting them in the head. They don’t like that at all. They’re like, “Oh, no. That’s terrible. These professionals are losers.” They want to show them how it’s done. It’s really about living your dream and having the heart to do it your way. In a lot of ways, it parallels the real story that Colin and I are going through as best friends starting out on a new adventure.
How are you funding the project?
We started a Kickstarter campaign last November. It’s a crowd funding website where you put up your project and you describe it to your audience. The public basically approves it by pledging to your project. You give various incentives. They can pre-order our book from us [and such].
Since I have a “Stargate” following, I was giving away a lot of my original scripts as part of the incentives to invest. A lot of people were saying, “What are you doing?” I like the idea of using the really wonderful bits of my history to provide for my future, the future of the people that I care about, and those creators I really believe in.
For more articles by Eric Shirey, check out:
‘A.D.D.: Adolescent Demo Division’ Graphic Novel Review
‘Batman: The Dark Knight, Volume 1: Golden Dawn: Deluxe Edition’ Review
‘American Vampire Volume 3′ Graphic Novel Review
Eric Shirey is the founder and editor of Rondo Award nominated movie and comic book news websites MovieGeekFeed.com and TheSpectralRealm.com. His work has been featured on Yahoo!, DC Comics, StarWars.com, and other national entertainment websites. Besides his three decades long obsession with everything sci-fi, horror, and fantasy related in TV and movies, Eric has what some would call an unhealthy love for comic books. This has led him to interviewing and covering legendary writers and artists in the medium like Geoff Johns, Scott Snyder, Steve Niles, Bernie Wrightson, and Howard Chaykin.