Marvel Screens Guardians for Co-Creator of Rocket RaccoonAugust 4, 2014
This past weekend, Marvel Studios gave a private Guardians of the Galaxy screening for Bill Mantlo, the co-creator of Rocket Raccoon.
Keith Giffen and Bill Mantlo created the character of Rocket back in 1976, however in an unfortunate accident in 1992, Mantlo suffered a traumatic brain injury following a hit and run accident. Marvel Studios decided to surprise Mantlo with a private screening of the film so that the writer could see a character he’d written come alive on the big screen for the first time. In a Facebook post, brother and caregiver Michael Mantlo said:
*****WHAT AN INCREDIBLE DAY FOR BILL MANTLO*****! Marvel hooked Bill up with a PRIVATE VIEWING of “Guardians Of The Galaxy”, and my wife Liz and my beloved cousin Jean assisted Bill throughout, enabling him to sit back, relax and relish in the AWESOMENESS of what is going to be, in my humble opinion, Marvel’s GREATEST AND MOST SUCCESSFUL FILM EVER! Bill thoroughly enjoyed it, giving it his HIGHEST COMPLIMENT (the BIG “THUMB’S UP!”), and when the credits rolled, his face was locked into the HUGEST SMILE I HAVE EVER SEEN HIM WEAR (along with one or two tears of joy)! This was the GREATEST DAY OF THE LAST 22 YEARS for me, our family, and most importantly, BILL MANTLO!
The gentlemen that made it possible for Bill to see his creation, ROCKET RACCOON, come alive in “Guardians Of The Galaxy”, Marvel Attorney David Althoff (far left) and Marvel VP David Bogart (center). Giving Bill this opportunity was a daunting challenge (with all the legal & security protocols that needed to be breached), but these two FINE MEN made it happen, and Bill had the HAPPIEST DAY OF HIS LIFE! I will NEVER be able to thank them enough for all that they have done for Bill!
– Michael Mantlo
Michael went on to tell Bleeding Cool in February that:
[blockquote]”Bill was treated in an exceptionally fair manner by Marvel/Disney, and on his behalf I can say with the utmost confidence that we are very pleased with the negotiated contract. And, unbeknownst to ALL, Marvel has made incredibly generous gestures apart from this particular contract (which ONLY pertains to the rights to the character Rocket Raccoon) to assist in Bill’s ongoing care & rehabilitation.”[/blockquote]
This story warmed our hearts here at the GCE and we hope it did the same for you. Our thanks goes out to Marvel for giving Bill the opportunity to see his creation come to life. It must have been an exhilarating experience for those involved, and thank you to Michael for the touching write up featured above.