You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Comic book artist Jean Giraud dies

Artist known as Moebius worked on 'Abyss,' 'Tron,' 'Silver Surfer'

Jean Giraud, one of the world’s most prominent comicbook artists and a key contributor to the look of films including “Alien” and “Tron,” died of cancer in Paris on Saturday, March 10. He was 73.

The artist, who drew for more than 50 years, was better known as Moebius.

His conceptual design work and storyboards were used in several films, including “Alien,” “Tron,” “The Abyss” and “The Fifth Element.”

Giraud also worked on a two-issue Silver Surfer comicbook series known as “Silver Surfer: Parable” with Stan Lee but was best known in France for his “Lieutenant Blueberry” character, an atypical Western hero that he created with Belgian scribe Jean-Michel Charlier.

Jean Henri Gaston Giraud was born in Nogent-sur-Marne, a suburb of Paris. At 16, he attended the Arts Appliques, where he began drawing and selling Western comics. In 1959-60, he served in the French military in Algeria.

His affinity for Westerns flourished with the 1963 birth of the “Lieutenant Blueberry” series, in which he was often credited as Gir. Giraud based the character’s look on French thesp Jean-Paul Belmondo. He later moved on to science fiction and fantasy, for which he utilized his Moebius moniker.

In 1975, he became one of the founding members of the comicbook art group Les Humanoides Associes, with whom he started the magazine Metal Hurlant, the magazine known in the English speaking world as Heavy Metal, a mix of science fiction and epic fantasy that served as a basis for the 1981 animated film of the same name.

Giraud’s talent as an artist drew him into the film business, starting with Ridley Scott’s “Alien” in 1979. He also worked on Disney’s original “Tron” in 1979 as well as 1980s films “Willow” and “Masters of the Universe.”

Last year, France’s Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art staged a major retrospective of Giraud’s work.

He is survived by his wife, Isabelle.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Godzilla

    Criterion Collection President Peter Becker on Storytelling, Bergman vs Godzilla, B-movies

    LYON, France  —  The Lumière Festival’s International Classic Film Market (MIFC) kicked off on Tuesday in Lyon, France, with a keynote address by Criterion Collection President Peter Becker. The exec discussed the company’s storied history and evolution over the decades into a leading publisher of classic and contemporary films from around the world in high-quality [...]

  • Manuel Chiche

    Boutique Distributor Manuel Chiche Offers A State of The Industry

    LYON, France  — Manuel Chiche is riding high. Since June, his boutique distribution outlet The Jokers set admission records with Bong Joon-ho’s “Parasite,” selling nearly 1.7 million tickets in France and still going strong as the film heads into its 19th week in theaters. Indeed, “Parasite” is now the second most successful Palme d’Or winner of [...]

  • Toni

    Italy’s L'Immagine Ritrovata Expected to Take Over France’s Eclair Cinema

    LYON, France  —  Leading Italian restoration company L’Immagine Ritrovata’s acquisition of renowned film lab Eclair Cinéma, announced last month, is expected to be approved by the French Commercial Court of Nanterre at the end of November or beginning of December, according to a source familiar with the deal. L’Immagine Ritrovata’s French subsidiary, L’Image Retrouvée, last [...]

  • Jay and Silent Bob Reboot

    Film Review: 'Jay and Silent Bob Reboot'

    In a film culture overrun by Marvel epics, wild-stunt action flicks, and other grandiose juvenilia, it is often said that the mid-budget, script-driven movie for adults is becoming a thing of the past. But don’t tell that to Kevin Smith, whose “Jay and Silent Bob Reboot,” a shaggy antic throwaway that premiered Tuesday in the [...]

  • So Long, My Son directed by

    Wang Xiaoshuai's 'So Long, My Son' Earns Six APSA Nominations

    Chinese drama “So Long, My Son” was nominated in six categories for this year’s Asia Pacific Screen Awards, an unprecedented haul that makes the Wang Xiaoshuai-directed film a clear favorite. A drama about separation, secrets, a lifetime of regret, and the consequences of China’s one-child policy, “So Long, My Son” had its premiere in February [...]

  • Alan Rickman

    Film News Roundup: 'Galaxy Quest' Documentary Set for Release

    In today’s film news roundup, rescue drama “Not Without Hope” is back in development, a “Galaxy Quest” documentary is set for release, “The Two Popes” wins another award, and Ella Joyce gets cast. PROJECT REVIVED U.K.-based financing-production outfit Goldfinch has bought feature film rights to Nick Schuyler’s “Not Without Hope” and signed “The Fog” director [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content