Jack Kirby’s Shakespearean Designs

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Jack Kirby is a name that almost anyone remotely interested in comics is familiar with. Dubbed by many as the “King of Comics,” he is the artist responsible for the looks of many of our favorite characters. His worked spanned decades and was appreciated by generations, but one interesting fact that many may not know is that he once designed costuming for the Shakespearean play Julius Caesar.

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In 1969, director and UC Santa Cruz staff member, Sheldon Feldner, contacted Marvel Comics and asked if one of their artists would be willing to designing costumes for the University Theater Companies production.

Calpurnia Sophist

Stan Lee was in receipt of the letter, and being a Shakespeare fan put Feldner in touch with Kirby who had recently moved to California. Jack was happy to oblige.

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Jack Kirby not only designed the costumes, he also provided a drawing that was used on the posters, handbills and programs. A local Sunday newspaper supplement Peninsula Living had illustrations of some of the designs Kirby provided in the publication on May 3 of that year.

The article makes a pretty interesting read;


To see more of these pictures check out the Jack Kirby Museum


All pictures courtesy of the Jack Kirby Museum.