08/7/13

The Mumbai Confidential pitch document

When Vivek and I started shopping around Mumbai Confidential, we prepared a simple two page pitch document that tried to introduce the story and high concept to publishers. There’s no right or wrong way to write a pitch. This worked for us. So we’re sharing this for other creators who wish to see a real pitch document (Given that Archaia published Mumbai Confidential, the pitch actually worked! :) ).

This document goes into some details about the plot. So it might contain *SPOILERS* about the book. You can purchase the hardcover for Mumbai Confidential on Amazon or Amazon India.

About Mumbai Confidential
Mumbai Confidential is a creator owned crime-noir comic book series created by Saurav Mohapatra and Vivek Shinde. The “Digital First” edition is available on ComiXology and the print hardcover is available on Amazon and FlipKart, from Archaia. Please do follow us on Facebook and/or Twitter.

Reviews: http://mumbaiconfidential.com/reviews

Here’s the text of the pitch document we sent out:

MUMBAI CONFIDENTIAL

Book 1 -"Good Cop, Bad Cop"
Proposal for a 120 Page Graphic Novel
By Saurav Mohapatra (mohaps@gmail.com)

Logline

"James Ellroy writes SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE"

The Hook

Hardboiled noir about a Dirty Cop taking on Killer Cops in Mumbai

What is it?

A 120 page crime-noir graphic novel about the "Encounter Cops" of Mumbai.

Who is it?

Saurav Mohapatra (story) and Vivek Shinde (art)

The Pitch

In the Indian city of Mumbai, Cops tasked with carrying out extrajudicial executions of wanted criminals turn it into a business for contract killings and extortion.

Troubled by the rise of the underworld that ran amok in Mumbai, the government authorized an elite police unit to apprehend and execute gangsters. These extrajudicial killings were filed away as fake "encounters" and thus the cops came to be known as the "Encounter Cops". But as the gangsters powers waned, the encounter cops themselves stepped in to fill the vacuum and ran the very same rackets they were created to eradicate.

That is the basic premise of Mumbai Confidential (MC) book 1 – "Good Cop, Bad Cop", a hardboiled crime-noir tale told though the eyes of ARJUN KADAM, a washed out drug addicted ex-cop. Once KADAM was a rising star in the ranks of the encounter cops, however the death of his pregnant wife at childbirth triggered a downward spiral that left him a pale shadow of himself. When KADAM is the victim of a hit and run, that also claims the life of a street urchin, he goes into coma for a month. After waking up, he finds a new sense of purpose and pursues the investigation into the identity of the driver on his own, when the police close the case for lack of leads. KADAM finds out that the driver was BALWAAN KHAN, an over the hill Bollywood B-Movie actor. This brings him into direct confrontation with his ex-colleagues (the encounter cops), who are now de facto gangsters in uniform and use KHAN’s movies to launder their money.

Mumbai Confidential is an attempt to bring the sub genre of "Mumbai Noir" to the international audience and to fuse it with the grim and gritty sensibilities of a James Ellroy tale.

Format

The story is told with a grayscale "wash" painted style and the narrative cuts between three timelines (the present, a month or so back and five years back). The story can either be presented as six 20 page issues or as a single 120 page original graphic novel.

Additionally, MC comes with a series of "Digital Shorts", which serve to enhance the main storyline. These will be printed in the eventual Trade Paperback or Collection as Bonus materials.

Demographic

MC is targeted at an audience similar to that for Frank Miller’s SIN CITY, the CRIMINAL series by Brubaker/Phillips and the fan base of James Ellroy. Though it is set in Mumbai, the creators sincerely feel that the universal appeal of hard-boiled crime-noir will make it accessible to the audience at large, with the exotic and unique setting adding to the flavor.

Plot

ARJUN KADAM, an ex-Encounter Cop, has lapsed into depression and heroin addiction after his pregnant wife’s death at childbirth. When he is involved in a hit and run, that leaves him in a coma and kills a street urchin, KADAM finds a new purpose in trying to solve the case the police quickly abandon as "unsolved". He finds the culprit – over the hill Bollywood B-Movie star BALWAN KHAN. But in trying to bring him to justice, he crosses paths with his ex-colleagues. The "Encounter Cops" led by the psychotic Inspector SAWANT have become the very thing they were mandated to eradicate.The corrupt cops now run the protection racket and launder their money through KHAN’s movies.

KADAM finds help from unlikely quarters – the gangsters, who lament the loss of control of the lucrative extortion racket to SAWANT’s cops. KADAM pits the gangsters against the crooked cops and in a final desperate gambit, sacrifices his own life to bring down the corrupt machine.

Creative team

Saurav Mohapatra lives in California and has written WITCHBLADE for Top Cow/Image DEVI, SADHU, INDIA AUTHENTIC and RYDERS for Virgin Comics. He co-created MUMBAI MACUGFFIN and JIMMY ZHINGCHAK for Virgin comics and has contributed to the second volume of THE PHANTOM CHRONICLES by MOONSTONE BOOKS. He’s currently working on his creator-owned projects MUMBAI CONFIDENTIAL and DHURANDHAR.

Vivek Shinde is a Mumbai based artist who has worked on SNAKEWOMAN, PROJECT: KALKI for Virgin Comics. He co-created and drew the newspaper strip SPECIAL OFFICER SAWANT for MID-DAY, a Mumbai daily. He’s also a freelance illustrator, concept/storyboard artist and a painter specializing in photo-realistic renderings. His past clients include INX Networks, Oglivy & Mather and Leo Burnett.

Further Reading and References

  • Mumbai Police "Encounter Squad" – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MumbaiEncounterSquad
  • "Bollywood",the Hindi film industry and the Mumbai Underworld – http://www.bollywhat.com/darkside.html
  • Bollywood Star involved in hit and run – http://www.rediff.com/news/2002/sep/28khan.htm
  • Mumbai Confidential website – http://mumbaiconfidential.com
  • Saurav Mohapatra’ blog – http://mohaps.com
  • Vivek Shinde’s blog – http://vivekshinde.blogspot.com
03/13/13

It’s Here! :) (sort of)

Quick post! Mumbai Confidential editor Rebecca Taylor just emailed me the photo of the first advance copy of the hardcover edition (Preorder: http://bit.ly/mcprint / Releasing April 30). Feels so great! :)

Mumbai Confidential is a creator owned crime-noir comic book series created by Saurav Mohapatra and Vivek Shinde. The “Digital First” issues are available on ComiXology and the print hardcover is due out in March 2013 from Archaia. Please do follow us on Facebook and/or Twitter.

12/23/12

Sneak peek at the interior pages of the hardcover

The Mumbai Confidential hardcover edition is getting ready to be sent to press for a March 2013 release from Archaia. We had the awesome design team of Howling Monkey Studios cook up some great looking interior design pages. Posting sneak peeks of the table of content and the interior title page of the hardcover here.

The Interior Title Page
00_mc_title

The Table of Contents
01_mc_toc

Mumbai Confidential is a creator owned crime-noir comic book series created by Saurav Mohapatra and Vivek Shinde. The “Digital First” issues are available on ComiXology and the print hardcover is due out in March 2013 from Archaia. Please do follow us on Facebook and/or Twitter.

11/18/12

Sneak Peeks and Status Update

Waiting for the last two pages of art from Vivek. The Archaia team has done an amazing job on the cover and overall book design. Can hardly wait to share that :)

Anyways, here’s a bunch of random sneak peeks we posted on our facebook page. If you want to stay up-to-date on all things Mumbai Confidential, do “like” our facebook page at http://facebook.com/mumbaiconfidential or follow us on twitter at http://twitter.com/mumbaiconfid

Mumbai Confidential issue #5 is now online as of first week nov at http://bit.ly/mcfull (available for your iOS, Android, and Web broswer reading pleasure). The print hardcover from Archaia will hit the stands in March 2013.


Blurbs for Mumbai Confidential



Old Cover Mockups/Roughs/Layout Tests

Here are some roughs that we put together to visualize how the issue covers will look like. the art is very rough and these are used to get the final look of the cover nailed.



Preview pages from Mumbai Confidential #5


10/24/12

Updates, Reviews, and Previews

At long last, it’s finally happening. Just finalized the page lineup for the print hardcover version of Mumbai Confidential vol 1 “Good Cop, Bad Cop”, 144 pages chock-a-full of hardboiled goodness :) We’ll be doing a final round of edits and sending that over to the printers in a week or so. Remember, the print version from Archaia hits the stands in Feb/March 2013. Meanwhile you can buy the “Digital First” editions at ComiXology store for iOS, Android and Web.

Fanboy Confidential posted a review of MC issues #1 and #2. They had good things to say about the book, and particularly for Vivek’s spectacular art. You can read the reviews here:

We had an awesome session at Mumbai Comic-con and many thanks to all those who attended. The photos of the session can be viewed on our facebook page. While you’re there, we’d love to get a “facebook like” from you. :)

And, last but not the least, just for kicks we created some posters for some fake “in-universe” movies featured in the book. I can’t give away the details (you’ll have to buy and read the book for that), but part of the story deals with an over-the-hill Bollywood actor who stars in movies with titles like “Gunda Coolie”,”Looteron ki Raftar”, “Inspector Hathoda”, “Bhaktiman”, “Bhaktiman Returns” and of course, the one you see below, “GUNDA DAROGA”. :) So I took some of Vivek’s interior art and tried to come up with a poster for it. Hope you like it. Writing these scenes was kind of a nice change of pace from the hardboiled gritty/grim main story of the book.

Till next time…

cheers,
mohaps

Mumbai Confidential is a crime-noir comic book created by Saurav Mohapatra and Vivek Shinde. It’s now available digitally at ComiXology and the print hardcover edition from Archaia will be available in March 2013.

Facebook: http://facebook.com/mumbaiconfidential
Twitter: @mumbaiconfid

10/10/12

Conventions! Conventions! Conventions!

Mumbai Confidential team will be there at two conventions in the next two weeks. First off I’ll be signing at New York Comic-con from Oct 11-14 and then the MC team is scheduled to make a special appearance in an interactive Q/A session about comics in general and the making of MC at Mumbai Film and Comics Convention in Mumbai on Oct 21st.

Mumbai Confidential signing schedule at NYCC 2012

ARCHAIA Booth #1520

  • Thurs, 10/11 7-8pm, Table 3
  • Fri, 10/12 5-6pm, Table 3
  • Sat, 10/13 12:30-1:30pm, Table 2

Here’s the free giveaway postcard/mini-litho I’ll be signing. So drop by and say hi.


Here’s the details for the Mumbai convention session

Vivek and I will be doing a session about Mumbai Confidential at Mumbai Film & Comics Convention on Oct 21st.

Plus, we might have some surprise guests :D from the extended Mumbai Confidential family!

We’re not big on formality, so mostly we’ll be shooting the breeze about comics and breaking into comics. We hope to have mostly a free form Q/A with the audience. Vivek and the other artists will be there in person and I shall be “live via satellite” :D

Customary shameless Plug: Mumbai Confidential issue #4 is now online at http://bit.ly/mcdigital4

and print hardcover is due from Archaia Entertainment in March 2013.

07/21/12

Some more preview art and other updates

Before we start off… the mandatory spiel :)

Mumbai Confidential “digital first” edition is now available from ComiXology for purchase on iPhone/iPad, Android, Kindle Fire and the web. Print hardcover from Archaia will hit the bookshelves in MARCH 2013.

The launch at SDCC was awesome. Thanks to our wonderful publishers Archaia, I had a great time. We’re down to the home stretch now and Vivek is winding up the last 40 odd pages art on the book. Here are some awesome sneak peaks at his art from upcoming issues.

Vivek’s art really breathes life into the world of Mumbai Confidential.

aha, before I forget…

here’s Samit Basu on Mumbai Confidential :

Watch out for this book. If you turn your back on it, it might stab you.

Thanks, Samit. We love you too. :)

About Mumbai Confidential

Mumbai Confidential is a crime noir comic book series (about the infamous encounter cops of Mumbai) created by Saurav Mohapatra and Vivek Shinde [more...]

06/24/12

Close Encounters

So, the Archaia page for Mumbai Confidential is up. So are creator pages for both Vivek and yours truly. As you can see on the page for MC at Archaia site, digital run starts July 2011 and the final print collection is scheduled for March 2013. So load up on the Chai Cutting and Vada Paav, the Mumbai invasion has begun :)

Do check out the MC Facebook page and Twitter feed. We’d love to hear back from you.

And, since we’ve made it this far, here’s a brief (in no particular order and by no means a complete) list of people (apart from the editorial team at our awesome publisher Archaia) we’d like to say thanks to (without whose support MC would’ve never happened):

  • Preeti Padhy
  • Aditi Kelkar-Shinde
  • Sid Kotian
  • Saumin Patel
  • Vinay Brahmania
  • Ron Marz
  • Mark Smylie
  • Samit Basu
  • Pradipta Sarkar
  • Mukesh Singh
  • Devaki Neogi-Kiran
  • Shounak Jog

About Mumbai Confidential

Mumbai Confidential is a crime noir comic book series created by Saurav Mohapatra and Vivek Shinde [more...]

04/26/12

Mumbai Confidential coming soon to a digital device and a bookshop near you :)

So, thank you loyal fans. We know it’s been significantly longer than a Mumbai minute since we announced Mumbai Confidential as a creator-owned project. We got great news for you. :)

As you might’ve noticed (if you follow our facebook or twitter feed) at C2E2 this year our publisher Archaia announced the impending release of MC (digital first and then print hardcover). :) Also, the hunt is on for an Indian publisher to do an Indian edition.

Vivek and I have been busy: he’s been cranking out awesomely lovely pages like a mad man and with a little bit help from my array of scripts and programs, I’ve been busy coloring and lettering them. :D We’re so on, baby!

I know the updates on this site haven’t been that frequent lately. That’s because we’ve been awfully busy in getting the book past the finish line. So fikaar nawt, it’s coming and it’s looking better than ever. :) Keep watching the skies…

We leave you with sneak peeks at two of the finished color panels from the book to tide you over till the next update :D

Sneak Peek Panel 1

Sneak Peek Panel 2

About Mumbai Confidential

Mumbai Confidential is a crime noir comic book series created by Saurav Mohapatra and Vivek Shinde [more...]