Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa

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Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Born 1973
Washington, D.C.
Occupation Comic book writer, playwright, television writer
Nationality American

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (born 1973)[1] is an American playwright, screenwriter, and comic book writer best known for his work for Marvel Comics and for the television series Glee and Big Love. The Chief Creative Officer of Archie Comics Inc.

Early life[edit]

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa was born in Washington, D.C., the son of a prominent Nicaraguan diplomat,[2] and raised in both the United States and Nicaragua.[3] He received his undergraduate degree at Georgetown University, where he studied playwriting under Donn B. Murphy, received a Masters Degree in English literature from McGill University, and graduated from the Yale School of Drama in 2003.[4]

Although he wrote some plays in high school, it was after college, while working as a publicist at the Shakespeare Theatre, that he had an opportunity to attend a week-long playwriting workshop under Paula Vogel during her 1998-99 residency at Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. Vogel had invited area theaters to send their "resident playwrights" and company director Michael Kahn sent Aguirre-Sacasa. She told him to "get serious" about writing plays and so he started applying to graduate programs in playwriting.[5]

Early plays during his first year at Yale include Say You Love Satan, "a romantic comedy spoof of the Omen movies", and The Muckle Man, "a serious family drama with supernatural overtones"; good reviews on summer productions of those helped him get a professional agent.[5] Rough Magic, an interpretation of Shakespeare's The Tempest where Caliban escapes from Prospero's island and finds himself in present-day New York, was produced at Yale during his last year there.[5]

Career[edit]

Playwriting[edit]

On April 4, 2003, Dad's Garage Theatre Company in Atlanta was scheduled to debut Aguirre-Sacasa's new play, Archie's Weird Fantasy, which depicted Riverdale's most famous resident coming out of the closet and moving to New York. The day before the play was scheduled to open, Archie Comics issued a cease and desist order, threatening litigation if the play proceeded as written. Dad's Garage artistic director Sean Daniels said, "The play was to depict Archie and his pals from Riverdale growing up, coming out and facing censorship. Archie Comics thought if Archie was portrayed as being gay, that would dilute and tarnish his image."[6] It opened a few days later as "Weird Comic Book Fantasy" with the character names changed.[7]

Other plays produced in 2003 were The Mystery Plays in New York, which had won a writing award the previous year from the Kennedy Center, and a hit production of Say You Love Satan at the 2003 New York International Fringe Festival.

Playwriting continued along with comic-book writing, with several productions of new and old works. In 2006, his semi-autobiographical Based On A Totally True Story (about a comic-book writer/playwright struggling with new-found success and boyfriend problems) was staged at the prestigious Manhattan Theatre Club in New York. When asked by The Advocate, "Which came first, being a comic-book geek or being gay?" he answered, "I would say I was probably a comic-book geek before I knew anything about being gay or straight. I certainly loved superheroes before I knew I was gay..." He also noted the play was, "thankfully", not about his current boyfriend.[8]

Good Boys and True, about a graphic sex tape that begins circulating around an all-boys prep school outside Washington, D.C., premiered at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre in winter 2008.[9]

In mid-2009, the Round House Theatre in Bethesda, Maryland, premiered his play The Picture of Dorian Gray, based on the novel by Oscar Wilde. That same year, Aguirre-Sacasa and artist Tonci Zonjic finished Marvel Comics' Marvel Divas miniseries, and he began working as a writer for the HBO series Big Love, a position he continued in 2010 during the show's fourth season.[10][11] In February 2010, he was announced to write the book for the musical adaption of the novel American Psycho.[12]

South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa, California, presented the premiere of his play Doctor Cerberus in spring 2010.[13] He also revised Robert Benton's musical It's a Bird...It's a Plane...It's Superman for the Dallas Theater Center production in Dallas, Texas, in June 2010.[citation needed]

In 2011, Aguirre-Sacasa was approached by the producers of the troubled Broadway musical Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark to help rewrite its script.[14][15][16]

In May 2011, Aguirre-Sacasa was hired as a co-producer and writer of Glee.[17] Two months laters, he was hired to write the comic book Archie meets Glee, scheduled to be published in 2013.[18]

London's Almeida Theatre said in April 2013 that Aguirre-Sacasa is writing the script for a musical based on Bret Easton Ellis' novel American Psycho, to run December 3, 2013, to January 25, 2014.[19]

Comics[edit]

Aguirre-Sacasa grew up liking comic books, recalling in 2003, "My mom would take us out to the 7-Eleven on River Road during the summer, and we would get Slurpees and buy comics off the spinning rack. I would read them all over and over again, and draw my own pictures and stuff."[5] He began writing for Marvel Comics, he explained, when "Marvel hired an editor to find new writers, and they hired her from a theatrical agency. So she started calling theaters and asking if they knew any playwrights who might be good for comic books. A couple of different theaters said she should look at me. So she called me, I sent her a couple of my plays and she said "Great, would you like to pitch on a couple of comic books in the works?"[5]

His first submissions were "not what [they were] interested in for the character[s]" but eventually he was signed for the Fantastic Four, with the first issues published early in 2004. The 11-page Fantastic Four story "The True Meaning of..." was in the Marvel Holiday Special 2004.[20] He went on to write Fantastic Four stories in Marvel Knights 4, a spinoff of that superhero team's long-running title; and stories for Nightcrawler vol. 3; The Sensational Spider-Man vol. 2; and Dead of Night featuring Man-Thing.[21]

In May 2008 Aguirre-Sacasa returned to the Fantastic Four with a miniseries tie-in to the company-wide "Secret Invasion" storyline concerning a years-long infiltration of Earth by the shape-shifting alien race, the Skrulls [22] and an Angel Revelations miniseries with artists Barry Kitson and Adam Polina, respectively.[10] He adapted for comics the Stephen King novel The Stand.

In 2013, he created Afterlife with Archie, depicting Archie Andrews in the midst of a zombie apocalypse; the book's success led to Aguirre-Sacasa being named Archie Comics' chief creative officer.[23]

Film[edit]

Aguirre-Sacasa wrote the screen adaptation of the remake of Stephen King's Carrie, released in October 2013. In June 2013 was scheduled to write Warner Bros.' planned live-action Archie movie.[24] He is also is writing the remake/sequel of the cult-classic horror film The Town That Dreaded Sundown.

Awards[edit]

In 2002, The Mystery Plays received the Roger L. Stevens Award from the Kennedy Center Fund for New American Plays.[3] He received GLAAD Media Award nominations for Golden Age[13] and for Say You Love Satan,[13] with the latter also winning a New York International Fringe Festival Excellence in Playwriting Award.[25] He tied for a Harvey Award for Best New Talent for his work on Marvel Knights Four.[26]

Bibliography[edit]

Comics[edit]

  • Marvel Knights 4 #1–27 (April 2004 – April 2006), continued as Four #28–30 (May 2006 – July 2006)
  • Nightcrawler  #1–12 (Nov. 2004 – Jan. 2006)
  • The Sensational Spider-Man vol. 2, #23–40 (July 2006 – Oct. 2007)
  • Dead of Night featuring Man-Thing  #1, 4 (April & July 2008)
  • Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four #1–3 (July–Sept. 2008)
  • Angel: Revelations #1–5 (July–Nov. 2008)
  • The Stand: Captain Trips #1–5 (early Dec. 2008 – March 2009)
  • The Stand: American Nightmares #1–5 (May–Oct. 2009)
  • Marvel Divas #1–4 (Sept.–Dec. 2009)
  • The Stand: Soul Survivors #1–5 (Dec. 2009 – May 2010)
  • The Stand: Hardcases #1–5 (Aug. 2010 – Jan. 2011)
  • Loki vol. 2, #1–4 (four-issue miniseries) (Dec. 2010 - May 2011)
  • The Stand: No Man's land #1–5 (Apr.–Aug. 2011)
  • The Stand: The Night Has Come #1–6 (Oct. 2011 – Mar. 2012)
  • Archie Meets Glee #641-644 (Mar. 2013 - June 2013)

Published plays[edit]

Television[edit]

  • Big Love (2009, staff writer; 2010, story editor; 2011, co-producer)
    • 3.05 – "For Better or for Worse" (written by) (15 February 2009)
    • 4.03 – "Strange Bedfellows" (written by) (24 January 2010)
    • 5.09 – "Exorcism" (written by) (13 March 2011)
  • Glee (2011—, staff writer, co-producer)
    • 3.05 - "The First Time" (written by) (8 November 2011)
    • 3.14 – "On My Way" (written by) (21 February 2012)
    • 4.06 - "Glease" (written by) (15 November 2012)
    • 4.16 - "Feud" (written by) (14 March 2013)
    • 5.06 - "Movin' Out" (written by) (21 November 2013)

Movies[edit]

Productions[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (1973 - ) at The Playwright's Database
  2. ^ a b O'Driscoll, Bill (January 18, 2007). "Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's Imaginary Folklore Drives 'The Muckle Man'". Pittsburgh City Paper. 
  3. ^ a b "Author Biographies". Dramatists Play Service. Retrieved May 20, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa". Prism Comics. Retrieved March 7, 2008. 
  5. ^ a b c d e Bugg, Sean (11 December 2003). "Other Worlds: Playwright Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa's Fantastic Journeys". Metro Weekly. Retrieved 2008-03-16. 
  6. ^ Hicks, Cinque (April 9, 2003). "Fallen Archies | Off Script | Creative Loafing Atlanta". Atlanta.creativeloafing.com. Retrieved August 16, 2010. 
  7. ^ a b Holman, Curt (2003-04-16). "Arch humor: Fantasy sends comic characters into real world". Creative Loafing. Retrieved 2012-10-28. 
  8. ^ "SuperPowered", The Advocate (961), April 25, 2006: 59, ISSN 0001-8996 
  9. ^ Walat, Kathryn (April 2008). "Sex, Lies, and Videotape à la Aguirre-Sacasa". The Brooklyn Rail. 
  10. ^ a b Phegley, Kiel (March 10, 2008). "Marvel Mondays: Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four". Wizard Entertainment. 
  11. ^ "Whatever knows fear...". Broken Frontier. February 7, 2008. 
  12. ^ Cox, Gordon (February 2, 2010). "'American Psycho' Musical Takes Shape". Variety. 
  13. ^ a b c d "Ryback & Culp Reprise Roles in South Coast Rep's 'Dr. Cerberus'". BroadwayWorld.com. March 25, 2010. Retrieved 2011-03-10. 
  14. ^ "'Spider-Man' Producers Have Their Eye on Script Doctor with Superhero Credentials". The New York Times. February 16, 2011. 
  15. ^ Friedman, Roger (February 21, 2011). "Spider Man Musical Not Getting New Director or Writer, Says Julie Taymor". ShowBiz411.com. 
  16. ^ Healy, Patrick (March 9, 2011). "Precipitous Fall for 'Spider-Man' Director". The New York Times. p. A23 of New York City edition. 
  17. ^ Fleming, Mike. "Broadway Spider-Man Re-Writer Tackles 'Glee' And 'Carrie' Remake", Deadline.com, May 19, 2011
  18. ^ Phegley, Kiel (2012-07-09). "Jon Goldwater Talks 'Archie Meets Glee'". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 2012-10-28. 
  19. ^ ""American Psycho" musical to get British premiere in 2013". Reuters. April 20, 2013. 
  20. ^ Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa at the Grand Comics Database
  21. ^ "Aguirre-Sacasa talks Dead of Night featuring Man-Thing". Comic Book Resources. February 13, 2008. 
  22. ^ "Brevoort announces Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four limited series (among others)". Comicboards.com. February 16, 2008. 
  23. ^ Archie Comic Picks Film and TV Writer for Top Creative Post, by George Gene Gustines, at the New York Times; published March 2, 2014; retrieved April 5, 2014
  24. ^ Finke, Nikki; Fleming, Mike Jr. (June 6, 2013). "Archie Comics Movie Deal Set at Warner Bros: High School Comedy With Zombies? Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa to Write, Jason Moore to Direct, Roy Lee-Dan Lin Producing". Deadline.com. Retrieved June 10, 2013. 
  25. ^ Jones, Kenneth (2006-02-14). "Casting Complete for MTC's Totally True Story, a World Premiere". Playbill. Retrieved 2011-03-10. 
  26. ^ "2006 Harvey Awards". Retrieved 2013-01-01. 
  27. ^ "Cherry Red Productions: Seven Deadly Dwarves". Dupont Circle Update #23. May 24, 2001. 
  28. ^ Jones, Kenneth (August 8, 2001). "Muckle Man Emerges from the Sea for DC World Premiere". Playbill. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  29. ^ a b Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (2009). Rough Magic. Dramatists Play Service. 
  30. ^ "Dark Matters by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa". About The Artists, The Production History of the World. 
  31. ^ "Translation/Adaptation of It's A Bird, It's A Plane, It's Superman by Charles Strouse". About The Artists, The Production History of the World. 
  32. ^ "The Weird by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa", 12 Peers Theater

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Hans Rodionoff
Man-Thing writer
2008
Succeeded by
current