Jacobson: I live in Los Angeles. Ernie lives in New York. So, this entire book was written via the Internet. I would write the script full out, in panels. Ernie could then take that and make additions and changes and send it back to me.
Slate: How did you decide what to keep and what to cut?
Jacobson: I just, as I went along, decided what I thought was most pertinent. It was done page by page, chapter by chapter. The best compliment was from the commissioners themselves, who thought this was such an incredible retelling of what they had done.
Slate: You two have collaborated for many years. When did you first work together?
Colón: That was at Harvey Publications. Sid was the editor, and I drew Casper the Friendly Ghost and Richie [Rich]. We connected quite immediately.
Slate: How did you get into the business?
Colón: I never thought of doing anything but comics, except maybe being a pilot. When I graduated, Fredric Wertham had just come out with that book, The Seduction of the Innocent. He closed quite a few comic shops. (Some of them may have deserved it, because the field was being ruled by horror comics at the time.) So, for years I couldn't get a job. Then Harvey Publications hired me as a letterer, and they found out six seconds after I got the job that I couldn't letter. I still can't letter. So, they hired me to draw.
Slate: And you started with the Casper character?
Colón: The Casper character started with Paramount Studios. But when Harvey took over, they refashioned the character: They put feet on him; they stopped referring to him as a "dead boy." In the movies he was just stuck with coming out of his grave and scaring a few people inadvertently—that was the end of the short. At Harvey, the writers were so good. They came up with the Ghostly Trio, and Wendy the Good Little Witch, and Spooky the Tuff Little Ghost, and they created this whole world.
Slate:I read that you adapted various classics for the Richie characters, including the children's book The Secret Garden. Is that right?
Colón: I did some classics for Boys' Life: Treasure Island, Don Quixote, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein.
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