This is the 36th album to recount the adventures of Asterix the Gaul! Its authors, Jean Yves Ferri and Didier Conrad, unveiled it – with a mischievous glint in their eyes – in Bologna, Italy at the International Children’s Book Fair before an enthusiastic audience and under the watchful eye of Albert Uderzo, creator of Asterix, accompanied by Anne Goscinny, the daughter of the late René Goscinny, Asterix’s other dad.
First, a little history: Jean-Yves Ferri and Didier Conrad were first introduced to Asterix readers in 2013. Emotions were running high, there were great expectations and the stakes were substantial. Our gallant warriors had not had a new adventure in eight years because Albert Uderzo had decided to “put down his pencils”. But he agreed to entrust his characters to this brand-new duo. The rest is history, as they say: the album Asterix and the Picts was a resounding publishing success worldwide – sales topped 5.4 million albums in 24 languages and dialects – and the publishing event of the year in 2013.
Since then, fans have been champing at the bit: Will there be another album? What about? Where will our heroes go? Will there be new characters? And what about the creators, are they ready to renew their trust in the duo that produced the 35th album?
The two authors of Asterix and the Picts then suggested a story idea: Albert Uderzo was enthusiastic and gave his blessing. So the same duo will produce the 36th adventure of the Gauls.
In January 2015, they announced the new album’s release date. But since it is still in the midst of production, they couldn’t say much about it. This was enough to set the networks afire with speculation! It’s obvious this new opus is already eagerly awaited.
The authors were willing nonetheless to talk about their work: “We are incredibly lucky to be able to do another Asterix,” they said, “even though there is more pressure than ever surrounding this second album.”
Fans can rest assured: according to the tradition set by the creators of Asterix, our heroes must travel to foreign climes in every other album. But that’s no problem, the authors took an oath to respect all the Asterix traditions in this album also: so the Gauls will stay in Gaul this time. The task before them was not an easy one. For two years, working 6,000 km apart, via computer and mobile screens, they exchanged ideas, discussed options, did a lot of crossing out, laughing, and fighting (no fish!), while sketching out, erasing and revising their project until they got the story right. (Does that remind you of a certain famous duo?)
But which region of Gaul remains to be discovered? What will be the theme (politics, social issues)? And what ruses will Caesar use this time to achieve his ends?
The authors finally spoke up: “There will be battles aplenty,” they confirm. “And yes, there will be new characters, including one really nasty and deceitful one,” they let slip with a smile. “Yes, there will be potions and Romans who get “walloped”. Yes, the plot will be complex and thrilling, and yes, there will be jokes about topical issues too.” In short, fans can look forward to a good-old Asterix album, just the way we like them!
So yes, it’s official, the GAULS are making a comeback: It seems that Caesar is still in “I came, I saw,” mode. As for “I conquered,” well we’ll see about that!
Asterix and the missing scroll is slated for release on 22 October 2015.
In the meantime, you are invited to visit the new website especially created for this occasion.
The site not only has all the latest information about the album ASTERIX AND THE MISSING SCROLL (plus info on the authors of this 36th album), but also background on the creators of Asterix and the worldwide publishing phenomenon set off by the Adventures of Asterix the Gaul, the world’s most frequently translated comic book. Visuals of our characters will be available, as well as photos and information on our networks (community and otherwise).
The content of www.asterix36.com will be updated monthly, and well after 22 october 2015.