Roger Kupelian is Lead Creative at Fugitive Studios Entertainment
Armenia My Friend : The East of Byzantium saga considerably grew since 2002. Could you explain what evolutions you deemed necessary to bring to this universe?
Roger Kupelian : The foremost change was the title. East of Byzantium was added to give it more of a unique identity although each of the products will have their own specific titles. The thrust of the stories did not change although the lens it was told through evolved a bit. The “angle” of the storytelling evolved from the development work.
AMF : East of Byzantium was recently developed as graphic novels named “One Hundred Paces” and “War Gods”? What are the main differences between these two novels?
Roger Kupelian : There are actually three items. Hundred Paces is a stand alone sample of a soldier in the ranks at Vartan’s battle at Avarayr in 451. War gods and Warrior Saints are both a linked saga ranging from 301 ad to 451 ad. These are the meat of the universe and there are actually even more stories alluded to in the volumes that expand the universe. The idea was to give the filmmaker a range of stores to choose from when adapting the stories to cinematic media.
AMF : Where are you at with the figurines? Are new characters going to be made? Where can we get them from?
Roger Kupelian : We’re still working on getting Vartan out there at an effective price point. Once the manufacturing and shipping are figured out, probably after the books are out there. And depending on demand we may do other characters
AMF : How does the team of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, with whom you collaborated for a while, perceive East of Byzantium?
Roger Kupelian : They dig it. I get a lot of encouragement from Peter Lyon, sword maker on Lotr, especially.
AMF : What message can East of Byzantium bring to the world?
Roger Kupelian : That Armenians are not a race of victims and that we embody a spirit of survival that can inspire any people or culture groups beyond ours. Also a revitalized set of effective symbols we can all rally around at a time of growing division.
Photo Credit: Roger Kupelian © East of Byzantium