Award-winning screenwriters Jacob Chattman and Gustave Cadet, a Suffolk alumnus, recently decided to take a different path from cinema by publishing their first graphic novel “Moons, vol. 1.”
“If you distill it, it’s about how if you don’t give up on yourself, you’re going to get there,” Chattman said of the story’s message.
The partners in crime have worked together for 13 years. Cadet, who graduated in 2008, said his time in Suffolk was what brought them together.
When they met, Chattman had just taken a road trip from Arizona to Boston to perform in the local band “Lagoon” at the behest of his sisters, and Cadet, having just started a small production company with a Another member of the Suffolk Student Film Organization, Ram Cam Productions, then known as WSUB, came up with the idea of reaching out to local bands and filming free music videos for them.
Cadet contacted the group when he found the group’s blog, which was run by Chattman, hilarious. Since then, business partners and best friends have been hip, having written countless award-winning scripts together.
“We are the yin and the yang,” said Chattman.
The two won several screenwriting competitions together, such as Fresh Voices for sci-fi pilot “After We Fall”, Creative World Awards for best screenplay comedy pilot “The Feed”, the following year, placing second with the “Cop Raptor” screenplay, which almost sold out in Hollywood.
The couple also made the PAGE International Screenwriting Awards with the first screenplay they wrote together, which they remade after moving to Los Angeles before entering the contest.
“I mean, for me anyway, that was the affirmation we needed to tell ourselves, ‘Hey, you’re on the right track and should keep going,’ Cadet said.
Not only was it because of his time as a student in Suffolk that Cadet met his best friends and business partners, but he said the university had helped him find out who he was as a young adult.
“Suffolk saved my life,” Cadet said.
These were the first words the alum said when asked to talk about his experience at school.
Cadet said he was able to find himself with the help of his cousin, who graduated from first year, and by joining the Suffolk Student Film Organization. As an incoming freshman, Cadet was incredibly introverted and knew he wanted more than a typical 9 to 5 job, but he wasn’t sure where to go, and this is his experience with the people of the world. Suffolk who really brought him out of his shell.
The Suffolk WSUB took him to the University’s Performing Arts Office and Drama Department where he worked with Suffolk Professors Wes Savick and Marilyn Plotkins, as well as DTP Director Kristen Baker. and Associate Director Kathy Maloney. He said the impact they had on him remains and he’s still in touch with some of them more than a decade after graduating.
Cadet became the Managing Director of WSUB and participated in countless productions for PAO and the theater department, giving him an experience for which he is still grateful today.
“Moons” is a story that began as a screenplay, having gone through many iterations before the couple made a graphic novel. Chattman said he was originally inspired to write the story based on a science program he watched on television.
“[The program] just blew my mind. So, of course, I call Gustave and I tell myself that we have to write a script. I don’t know the idea. I don’t know a lot of characters. I mean, it just has to exist on this world where the moon drags the ocean, ”Chattman said.
“[Gustave] started to flesh out the characters and I had another dream on the novel’s opening scene, ”he continued. “It’s kind of how our partnership works. I have these nebulous and crazy things and Gustave is like, oh, let me cut that perfectly and add the brilliant kind of character voice to it.
The original script for “Moon” went through about seven iterations, as it was originally written as a fantasy TV series. It was the first time the couple wrote in this genre.
Chattman said it was their hardest script to distill because he had so many ideas about history and magical systems and gods that he couldn’t stop writing.
“You’re a writer, you write it all up, you have the script, you want to see it done, you see it so clearly, but you can’t do it yourself,” Cadet said, speaking to the world. Hollywood, and how incredibly frustrating that can be.
“So with ‘Moons’ we went through a bit of that,” he continued. “It was that when we had these town halls and the ‘Moons’ came into the conversation, they were like, oh my god, that sounds amazing. It could be like the next “Game of Thrones”. This is a series of franchises. But again, you’re no one in the system, and no one is going to spend $ 2 million on pilots, let alone the show.
After having lived many frustrating experiences, the idea came to them to make “Moons” a graphic novel. The job might have been a lot harder if they had to start from scratch, but it was already in such a beautifully written visual format that started out as a screenplay that the novel’s illustrators worked really well, they said. .
“I didn’t expect to love the process of creating a graphic novel as much as I did,” said Chattman. “It’s actually really fun, once you see these characters in person and see the work the illustrator does, and it’s a very, very inspiring medium that I never expected to fall in love with. as much as us. “
The cover of the graphic novel, which is the main character of the Ora story, is something that many people have found captivating, the couple said. Chattman said it was moving to see their vision finally come to life after seven years.
“Seeing that, I mean, I remember crying,” Chattman said upon seeing the final illustration of Ora.
Chattman and Cadet decided that this novel, at its core, should be the story of a young girl facing loss and coming within herself. The story has a truly inspiring and touching message, while also being filled with great villains, wizards, creatures, and magic.
Of all the things learned during their years as writers, both encourage others to pursue their goals and not be afraid of making mistakes.
“Don’t be afraid,” Chattman said. “I mean, Gustave and I have failed so many times on so many scripts and so many ideas. You learn so much, the greater the failure, the more you learn. The bigger your fall, the more you will benefit from it. So fail as much as you can ”,
“Lunes, Vol. 1” is available for purchase now at Comixology.
Follow Abby on Twitter @astreabbs.