This July, Star Wars: Lando will make history as the first true spotlight comic series for the infamous — and suave — gambler-turned-Rebel hero. Artist Alex Maleev joins writer Charles Soule on the project, a sure enough cause for celebration, as well as an exclusive look at Maleev’s art for the book and a brief Q&A continued here from Marvel.com. (In case you missed it, be sure to check out part one of this interview!)
StarWars.com: Alex, in visual terms, who is Lando Calrissian to you? He’s known for his smile and his style — is there more to him than that?
Alex Maleev: That’s a question for Charles. Visually I follow his appearance from the movies, with small costume changes.
StarWars.com: Okay, so, beyond Lando himself, what other characters in the book have really made it enjoyable for you, and why?
Alex Maleev: Papa Toren is my favorite character in the book so far. I am not sure if I can reveal information about him, but he makes an entry in the book with two of his little creatures/guards.
StarWars.com: How have you approached layouts on Lando, as opposed to, say, how you would approach a super hero book?
Alex Maleev: Same thing, I play by the script. Rules still apply as in any other gig.
StarWars.com: The story revolves around the theft of a ship — do you enjoy drawing the ships and droids and mechanical stuff of the Star Wars universe?
Alex Maleev: Boy, that’s the most difficult part, [because] we have tons of new environments, even within the ship’s boundaries. That has been the toughest task on the book for me. Mind you, I am used to fire escapes and dark alleys.
StarWars.com: Some Star Wars artists say they play the film soundtracks while drawing — are you doing anything special to get you into that Star Wars groove?
Alex Maleev: Yes, kicking everybody out of the studio. I listen to talk-radio in the mornings, some podcasts in the afternoon, and music at night. My son plays the Star Wars themes on his piano all the time, even when I am trying not to think about work.
StarWars.com: Lastly, if you had a choice, what one other Star Wars character would you love to draw in their own series?
Alex Maleev: Jar Jar Binks, of course.
Jim Beard, a native of Toledo, Ohio, has worked as a professional writer since 2002, not only on comic books, but also on prose adventure fiction. He’s contributed weekly to Marvel.com for over 10 years, one of his proudest achievements.