Thursday, July 11, 2013

Creative Mastermind: Anthony Misiano, aka Harley's Joker.

Many of you may know this guy as one of, if not THE most photogenic Joker to ever walk the planet. And while Anthony Misiano, aka Harley's Joker, is definitely an incredible costumer, he is also an actor, director, writer, song writer and composer just to name a few. Needless to say, Anthony is a talented artist in various forms. As a pretty big fan, I felt honored to have the opportunity to interview him.

Photo: Low Carb Media
So, I must say, as a HUUUUGE Batman fan since as far back as I can remember, it really is an honor to have this opportunity! I can be rather picky sometimes, and you by far have won me over with your incredible costume work as Harley’s Joker. Did you custom make it all yourself?
The costume was all made from scratch with the exception of socks, shoes, spats, gloves and shirt, however all five of those were altered in some way, at least a little if not quite a lot. All pieces are designed by myself, and anything that I personally can do, I do, whether it be making buttons, dying materials, distressing materials, making props, etcetera. I cannot however sew, so when it comes to passing the thread through the needle I call upon the help of a few very talented, extraordinarily patient people who are always open to my sometimes odd ideas. I like thinking out of the box, I think simply because I have no formal training and was never shown the box. I will however admit my underwear is untouched, it's from Macys… I love my Calvins.

 How did this all get started, anyway? You seem to have taken the costuming world, as well as the con world, by storm!
 I’m a born and raised San Diegan, so attending San Diego Comic Con is just sort of a thing you do here. I’ve been going for years. Then last year, without too much motivation, I decided to wear this costume I had been working on. People really responded well to it. It’s all very unexpected.

Photo: Nicotinamida Adenina Dinucleótido
What inspiration did you draw from for your costume? My favorites being The Killing Joke and Batman: The Animated Series, I can see similarities in the costume and the way you portray the Joker. Am I right, or am I bonkers? What are some of your own favorite versions of Mr. J?
I pulled visual inspiration from a very large number of artists renderings, though pretty much 100% from the comics. In reference to “The Killing Joke”, whether or not that’s my favorite Joker COSTUME is neither here nor there, it IS however my favorite depiction in the comics of the characters emotional range and expression. As far as comics in general I was always drawn to the artwork. If you haven’t seen it, check out “Arkham Asylum: A Serious House On Serious Earth”, the artwork by Dave McKean is absolutely stunning.
What’s the best thing that has come from your popularity as Harley’s Joker?
I have an audience with which to share some of my creative passions and projects.
I’m very excited about The Batman Chronicles, from both the teaser trailer and images, to the descriptions I’ve read on the Indiegogo page. FINALLY! An excellent looking adaptation true to the comics! The teaser especially gives me chills. What involvement, besides being the Joker (of course), did you play in the development?
I was also on the project as a producer, helping orchestrate certain elements of the production and assisting in guiding the creative vision. Fortunately there was little to no
butting of heads when it came to the piece of work we wanted to produce, everyone had nearly the same ideas in mind. It was a great experience.

(You can check out the teaser, featuring Anthony, here!)
I adore Joker’s Harley! *excited waving to Alyssa* Harley Quinn has been my favorite since her debut. How’d you guys meet, and when did plans for a Harley costume come in? (If you don’t mind my asking.)
I adore her as well. We actually met via a mutual friend online, however I’m not even sure if that person knows that she and I are dating, haha. When we met I was still working on my costume, then after we had been dating a few months San Diego Comic Con happened and everything sort of blew up online. Over the next four to six months or so we pretty much made up our minds that Harley needed to be the next project, so we got to work.
Over the years, I’ve acquired a somewhat ridiculous number of Batman things, most of which are very random, some are pretty nifty collectables. There’s even an autographed picture of this one awesome costumer guy in there. Do you collect any Batman stuff yourself, or have any nifty collections or interests you might want to mention?
I have comics, but nothing of an official collectable status. Outside the realm of Batman I do have a number of unique and wonderful Michael Jackson collectables. I’ve been a fan of his my entire life, since before I can remember.
Random and somewhat off yet on subject – have you ever heard “Joker’s Song” by Miracle of Sound?
About once a day someone will send it to me on my facebook page or post it on my wall. I have heard it plenty of times.
You’re an all around creative guy from what I gather. Actor, costumer, director, and I believe I’ve even seen writer. The work on The Batman Chronicles, your con-going as the Joker, and Reel Butter. That’s a lot on your plate! Anything else you do?
Whatever the Universe will let me. I only wish I didn’t need sleep, I could get a lot more done.
What have been some of the most exciting or interesting things that have happened to you between your work as an actor to your time as Harley’s Joker? Have any funny stories? Meet any interesting people?
As far as the Joker stuff goes, conventions are always full of interesting and wonderfully unique people from all walks of life, there’s never a dull moment if you keep your eyes open.
What are some of your favorite roles you’ve gotten to portray as an actor?
Nothing most non-theatre lovers would really know. I suppose the two I enjoyed most were Gary in “Noises Off”, and Picasso in Steve Martin’s play, “Picasso at the Lapin Agile”.
Have there been any books, movies, people, artists, etc. that have influenced you considerably?
 Hundreds. But then again you sort of asked about EVERYTHING, haha.
What’re five random facts or quirks most people don’t know about you that you’d like to share?
1. There’s not a day gone by I don’t wish I could just be by the bay riding a bicycle. 2, I’m a vegan (though my girlfriend makes me cheat and have cheese fairly often now). 3, I write songs and compose music, it’s one of my greatest loves though it will probably never be exercised in any commercial sort of way. 4, I’m compulsively productive and a bit intense at times when I’m working, so I greatly admire the patience of those who actually choose to spend time with me, haha. Fortunately I’m eccentric and entertaining as well. 5, While not afraid of spiders or snakes, bees still freak me out a bit.
Any final comments before you go? Anything you want to ask me or the readers?
Lather, rinse, and repeat. Unless you don’t really care about repeating, then it’s alright. Redundancy is for schmucks anyway. Redundancy is for schmucks anyway.

(Photo: Low Carb Media)

I would like to thank Anthony for taking a moment out of his busy schedule for us! Please check out Anthony Misiano and Harley's Joker at the links below:
Photo credit goes to:
Low Carb Media (majority of the images)
Subversive Photography (Joker and Harley image)
Nicotinamida Adenina Dinucleótido

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