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The Simpsons creator is coming to Sydney
Written by
Emma Joyce

Matt Groening is the man behind the longest running scripted show in television history, The Simpsons, as well as the cartoon strip Life in Hell and TV show Futurama. The cartoonist is making his first trip to Australia for this year’s Graphic Festival and the headline speaker will be sharing stories from the making of The Simpsons as well as showing home movies and rarely seen animations, including uncensored Itchy & Scratchy cartoons.

Friend and fellow cartoonist Lynda Barry will join Groening for a talk called ‘Love, Hate & Comics: The Friendship That Would Not Die’. Both Groening’s talks will be exclusive experiences to Graphic Festival and as the festival’s co-curator Ben Marshall puts it, “We’ve been chasing him to appear at Graphic for six years. We can’t quite believe the moment’s finally here.”

THX 1138 performance at the Barbican, London
THX 1138 performance at the Barbican, London
Photograph: Supplied

The sixth Graphic Festival is taking place on November 4-5, celebrating storytelling across illustration, comics, animation and music. The line-up of ticketed events includes a screening and live re-scoring of George Lucas’ directorial debut THX 1138. The film is a sci-fi classic that became the blueprint for sagas like Star Wars. Tickets for this Australian premiere are highly likely to sell out, so get in quick when tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday September 16.

Neil Gaiman will be back at the festival, this time via live satellite. The Concert Hall will be trasnformed into a grand theatre for two screenings of Dream Dangerously and Likely Stories, a collection of short fantasies adapted for the screen by Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard. 

There’ll be free talks and free film screenings – a traditional offering of Sydney Opera House’s annual festival. You can hear from Australian cartoonist Michael Leunig, graffiti artist and manga illustrator Brandon Graham, and a panel of speakers discussing sexism in comics, lurid storytelling and political tensions in cartoons. Plus, free screenings include a doco on the French artist Moebius Redux, two more Likely Stories from Neil Gaiman and the Chris Ware collection narrated by Ira Glass and animated by John Kuramoto. 

Graphic Festival takes place at Sydney Opera House on Nov 4-5

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