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This Malaysian Comic Is Being Picked Up By An American Publisher

This Malaysian Comic Is Being Picked Up By An American Publisher

Andika The Neosantara Saga was first awarded Best New English Comic and Best Coloured Comic in 2012.

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It started over 10 years ago when Mohd Adnan Shamsuddin and his team won the 2009 Intellectual Property Creators’ Challenge (IPCC) Creative Grant run by the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC), Malaysian Super Corridor (MSC) and Malaysia Animation Creative Content Centre (MAC3).

With the RM25,000 they were granted, Andika The Neosantara Saga was born two years later with Volume 1 Part 1 released in 2011.

Mohd Adnan Shamsuddin – Art Director at Nanzoworks Studio / Creator of Andika The Neosantara Saga
(Credit: Andika The Neosantara Saga / Facebook)

In the official Andika The Neosantara Saga’s Facebook, Adnan reflects how his comic was awarded Best New English Comic and Best Coloured Comic in 2012 by the Malaysian Comic Entrepreneurs Association (PeKOMIK).

The first print sold out at Malaysia’s Comic Fiesta 2010 and the success would later take the team to the San Diego Comic-Con in 2012. However, due to the lack of professional promotion, the project was “left in the dark and forgotten”.  

Opportunity knocks

Adnan tells TRP that things started to look up when Manuel Godoy, CEO of Black Sands Entertainment based in Columbia, Maryland in the US, contacted him in January this year after coming across his Andika comic strip in a foreign art Facebook group. The rest is history and the Andika project is back in full swing with a 12 issue deal in the works.

Described as ‘the most popular independent black content developers in the nation’ on their LinkedIn, Black Sands Entertainment targets the black community but has creators from other communities as well. 

An archipelagic universe filled with magical beings

Andika The Neosantara Saga is a story about a boy on an archipelago called Andika, who wants to live outside his tribe’s strict rules. 

The story happens in the alternate universe of Nusantara called Neosantara and is filled with beasts, magical beings, fighting and drama. 

Although it’s a fictional story, it’s based on historical characters with even legendary warriors Hang Tuah and Hang Jebat making an appearance.

Top: A page from Andika The Neosantara Saga / Bottom: Initial sketch of the comic
(Credit: Andika The Neosantara Saga / Facebook)

The first issue of the US printed release is now open for pre-orders which is estimated to arrive in August. It will have 52 fully coloured pages and the first issue retails at RM35 (postage excluded).

Get a signed copy if you buy direct from them here. Copies are limited and orders close on 5 July 2021 .

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