Acclaimed Horror Comic Artist Bernie Wrightson Dead At 68

His wife, Liz Wrightson, confirmed the news via her husband's website on Sunday morning. Bernie was a friend to just about everyone in comics, an outgoing, life loving personality.

In addition to his work as an illustrator, Wrightson worked as a concept artist on a number of beloved films including Ghostbusters, Galaxy Quest, and Frank Darabont's The Mist, for which he designed the creatures including the instantly iconic Impossibly Tall Creature.

Wrightson, born October 27, 1948, was known for his horror illustrations and comic books. In 1968, he showed copies of his sequential art to DC Comics editor Dick Giordano and was given a freelance assignment. It was in 1971 that Wrightson co-created Swamp Thing with writer Len Wein, a character that would go on to become a pillar of DC Comics publishing, and become the subject of one of the very first DC Comics films outside of Superman: The Movie. In 1975, he formed The Studio with Barry Windsor-Smith and Michael Kaluta, and Jeff Jones to pursue work outside of comics. His many other projects included a comic book version of the 1982 Stephen King-penned anthology horror film Creepshow and a 1983 edition of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, for which he spent seven years creating around 50 illustrations. "The "Captain Sternn" segment of the animated film Heavy Metal is based on the character created by Wrightson for his award-winning short comic series of the same name". He later collaborated with Marvel Comics on Spider-Man, and The Punisher.

Recent work includes a collaboration with 30 Days of Night creator Steve Niles for the three-issue comic book series Frankenstein Alive, Alive!

He is survived by his wife, two sons, John and Jeffrey, and one stepson, Thomas Adamson.

  • Salvatore Jensen