DE: Did you get to go to Prague to work on Blade
MM: I did but not for the filming. But I went over
with del Toro to help scout locations. It was pretty
weird. I didnít know Iíd be doing that when I woke
up one morning. I thought I was going to Los Angeles
to work on the film and then work from home. When I
get to LA they tell me Iím going to Prague. That was
DE: What did you do exactly?
MM: I was kind of like at Guillermoís beck
and call. Anything he came up with -- costumes, sets or
whatever -- he would throw that stuff to me and a couple
of other guys. I would do drawings that would then be
turned over to the costume designer or the production
designers. So I was sort of the link between Guillermo
and the people who have to make it happen.
DE: What were you credited as?
MM: I got a visual consultant credit. I have no
idea what that means.
DE: Did you work on the designs for the Reavers, the mutated vampires?
MM: Well before Wayne Barlowe, the monster
specialist, came in we worked on it. But he was the
expert and he came up with what was inside their faces when
they split apart.
DE: Iím a big David Cronenberg fan and the
production designer for Blade 2 is Carol Spier
(production designer for Crash, Naked Lunch,
The Fly). What was it like working with her?
MM: She was great. Again I had the easy job. I
got to design stuff with no restrictions. Then I would
give the stuff to Carol and she say stuff like, "How
the hell am I going to do this?" I designed this giant
laboratory and she looked at the drawing and said, ďYou
were in Prague, you saw the soundstages, where the
hell would I build this?Ē My job was to imagine and
Carolís job was to deal with the earthly reality.
She was great to work with and to hang out with.
DE: What did you design exactly for Blade 2?
MM: Well one character (Lighthammer played by
Daz Crawford) uses a giant hammer with a spike on it.
I designed the hammer. Also thereís an autopsy table
that Blade lays on which pops up and holds you down.
That was mine. Also one of the laboratories was mine,
Iím not sure which one. The cool thing is the website
has sketches of mine which del Toro voices over.
DE: What do you think of the Marv Wolfman
controversy over Blade? (When the first Blade movie
was released, Marv Wolfman, who co-created the
character in the comic book Tomb Of Dracula in the
1970ís, sued Marvel charging that he owned the
character. He lost the case)
MM: I really donít know much about since I
had nothing to do with the first film. Iíve never
encountered a situation where characters Iíve created take
part in something that makes someone else a lot of money. Sure Iíve
worked for the big companies but I understood what I
was working. But I feel bad for anyone who is placed
in that situation where the rules werenít as clearly
defined as they were when I was started working in the
DE: Why wasnít the Hellboy PC game released in
MM: I have no idea what happened with that
game. Something weird happened there. Iíve never
gotten a straight answer about this. These guys who
were working on it were somehow part of Dark Horse.
Then I forgot all about because the creation of the
game went on for so many years. Then when I asked
about the video game the company making it had moved back to France
or it had become a separate company. No one knew
anything about it and no one seemed willing to deal
In fact the game was made. I do have a copy
of it but Iíve never seen it. Computer games arenít
my thing. Iíve never seen a dime for it discounting
the original sum I was paid for the rights to do it. I
believe thereís some kind of ugly situation
surrounding it. There were little stupid things they
did which they didnít have permission to do. They
did a mousepad and stuff like that, which I
specifically did not grant them permission to do. I
also have heard is that the game isnít any good.
Probably when they started out the technology was on
par with what was being done but by the time they
finished the sophistication of the game technology was quite behind the times. I think everybody at Dark
Horse wants the thing to dry up and blow away.
Hopefully somewhere down the line we could do an
DE: I saw that you did a Deadman cover for this
MM: Yes I did a string of three Deadman covers.
DE: So obviously you still get calls from the big
companies to do work.
MM: Not very often. Almost never from Marvel.
Maybe once every two to three years. DC called me to
do those covers and because they called me, foolishly
I was thinking it was Deadman the horror comic, like
when Kelley Jones did it a few years ago. I agreed to
do it because I thought it would be fun to do. Then
when I saw what the comic was, I realized that it wasnít
a horror comic. I didnít really think I was suited
for it. I did manage to do three covers. But thatís
it for the Deadman covers. It seemed like a case of
DE: Is he a superhero now?
MM: I donít even know what the hell he is. It
looked like one of those comics where people get in
and out of cars and walk down hallways. Not creepy
stuff like haunted houses and graveyards.
DE: So you havenít been asked to do any full
books from anyone?
MM: Iíve gotten the impression that if I
wanted to do something I could. But it's pretty well
known that I donít have any interest in doing that
stuff. Once youíve had the experience of doing your
work where you could do anything you want with your
own character it's very hard to put that aside and
work for hire where there are a lot of rules. Itís
just so much easier to say, ďI know what has
DE: Is it easier doing work-for-hire for the Disney
MM: Well, thatís fun. Itís such a completely
different experience. The Disney and Blade experience
were so unique in that I was part of a team of guys
working on something. The idea of getting paid by the
hour to sit down, toss ideas around and not
necessarily draw but just to bounce ideas back and
DE: What was it like working with people who were
trained by Disney to draw like you?
MM: I donít know how many people were involved.
They were teaching people to draw like me, to what
degree of success I donít know. What struck me is
when I walked into Disney there were diagrams laid
over comic book pages explaining how I do it and what I do in
terms I didnít even understand. It's very weird seeing
In fact Ricardo Delgado (Age of Reptiles) was the
guy they got to teach the class to draw like me.
They didnít ask me and quite frankly somebody else
would be better at it then I would. Being more
or less self-taught, I have no idea why I do what I
do. But for someone else to have to figured it out to
instruct others is very strange.
DE: Were you disappointed in the Atlantisí lack
MM: Yeah, it would have been nice if it were a
gigantic hit. The beauty of that kind of stuff is that
it wasnít my movie. It was a fun experience; I was
on it off and on for a year. So by the time it came
out, maybe two years since I finished work on it, it was
so far in the past you just hope for the best. But
seeing the DVD, which has so much of me on it -- they
give me credit for so much stuff, and they show my
production design and me making a fool of myself in
meetings and stuff -- has been a thrill. It's very bizarre
to be given credit on a project like that. Iíd love
to do it again.
DE: Have you noticed your style in any other movies
you werenít involved with?
MM: Not really. Usually other people will tell
me things like, ďThat guyís doing you.Ē I donít
tend to recognize it. I have certainly heard that in
other animation studios they have a lot of my work hanging
on the walls. I havenít seen anything and gone, ďWhoa
that looks too much like me!Ē
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