NFL Veteran Israel Idonije Opens Up About Creating Comic Book Series


Some of Israel Idonije’s fondest memories as a child are of curling up with a comic book copy of The Green Hornet and escaping into the world of masked vigilantes and make-believe.

Yes, the six-foot-six, 275-pound Nigerian-Canadian defensive end who has spent 12 years in the NFL told The Huffington Post that, during his childhood, his parents — whom he said always valued education — allowed him and his siblings to watch just one hour of television each day. So the young Idonijes read books as another source of entertainment.

“That was kind of the environment we grew up in,” Idonije said. “And when it was my reading time… I read comic books.”

As each enchanting reading session nourished Idonije’s growing interest in comic books, he never imagined that he would later create a comic book series of his own.

Now, two issues of Idonije’s brainchild The Protectors have been released under his publishing house Athlitacomics, and the series is currently being developed as a Madefire motion book. Details on the motion book’s debut will be announced at the comic book expo C2E2 in Chicago in April.

Fusing sports with fantasy, The Protectors follows fictional football player Isaac Chike and other star athletes as their celebrity worlds get turned upside down when they learn that they are destined to be among the so-called Protectors, a group of gifted superheroes with miraculous powers.

Idonije insists Chike is not based on him, but there are striking resemblances: Chike is a defensive end and so was Idonije; Chike is a member of the Chicago Blaze and Idonije was a member of the Chicago Bears.

“It’s always funny especially with my teammates and stuff. They’re always like ‘it’s the comic book that’s about you but it’s not about you,’” Idonije said with a chuckle.

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SOURCE: The Huffington Post
Jacqueline Howard

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