News Release -

Previous Page
News Release



Vancouver, BC
– Hot on the heels of his comic book debut, Captain Cannabis [a.k.a.Hal Lighter] makes his premiere screen appearance in the first of a series of "420" DVD’s released through oKee comX. That’s 420 as in the name, not quantity.

Veteran animator and illustrator Verne Andru launched the 420 series with the publication of the first of 13 comic books featuring ‘Captain Cannabis,’ during October 2006. "Since the story is destined to be a feature animated film, it only makes sense to do a DVD in tandem with the books," says Andru. "I’m quite excited about it."

...Capt.Cannabis is as far from politically correct as you can get...
...Issue 1,written for mature audiences,introduces the main characters and sets up the drama that unfolds in the rest of the series...Review from

As Andru tells it, "The character evolved in the 1970’s when I was starting out as a comic book illustrator. I created Captain Cannabis as a counter-point to the goody-two-shoes characters dominating mainstream comics at the time. Needless to say, I was surprised when I received an official certificate from the copyright office dated April 20, 1977 for my Captain Cannabis character."

Andru’s career didn’t stop with comic books. He mixed comic book illustration with animation projects for studios like Hanna Barbera, Universal Cartoon Studios and Nelvana Films, gaining valuable experience in the craft of cartoon making along the way. Projects included Nelvana’s "Rock And Rule" that combined Disney-style animation with then state-of-the-art special effects by none other than Industrial Light and Magic.

"I Can ’t Wait That Long"
Series #:420-001 DVD
Publisher oKee ComX, #1 edition (February ,2007)
Format: DVD NTSC Video
Retail Price: $9.95 web-direct

"During ‘Rock and Rule’ I was fortunate to be training under Frank and Ollie, a couple of Disney’s ‘wise men,’" Andru explains. "And our special-effects were being done ILM, so I found myself designing first-class animations for these complicated computer controlled camera systems I had no clue about. When the project wrapped, I went to college to get a handle on what this computer stuff was all about. I graduated with honors, so I guess I figured it out. On the 420 project I pulled all these experiences together and designed it to use the best of the web, print and film. The web is great for immediacy, print is a tactile experience and film adds action and sound that really brings the characters to life."

Starting with a feature-film screenplay, Andru’s next step was to break it into 13 chapters. "Working a chapter at a time, I first ink it in black-and-white, which I publish to the web," he explains. "I then colour the chapter and publish it as a comic book, which is sold through the website [] and distributed in stores in Canada and globally through The companion ‘extras’ DVD, contains the collected bits that have been produced to date, including colored webisodes."

Andru explains, "Normally the website, books and DVD extra’s are done after the film release. With 420, the story is so outside-the-box that it’s only fitting the production is approached the same way. I’ve turned the process upside down and am releasing the materials as they are produced so people can follow it in "real time."

- 30 -

Previous Page