Spanish artist Carlos Sanchez Ezquerra, co-creator of the world popular Judge Dredd, passed away 1 October 2018 of lung cancer. Although best known for his artwork in British comics, he was born in Zaragoza, Spain and lived in the Principality of Andorra.

In addition to co-creating Judge Dredd he also illustrated The Stainless Steel Rat and Strontium Dog and Just a Pilgrim, as well as El Mestizo and Major Eazy.   He also did art for western, romance, and WWII stories.in, addition to dystopian science fiction.  His talent was not limited to one genre.

MSN reported  that Ezquerra broke into British comics in the mid-1970s with his artwork for Battle Picture Weekly, set during WWII.  He drew Rat Pack and Major Eazy for BPW.  His peers considered him instrumental to the success of 2000AD, which launched in 1977.

2000 AD posted this on their website about Ezquerra’s contributions: 

In 1976, he was asked to create a new character, the future lawman Judge Dredd, for a new weekly science fiction comic called 2000 AD. Thanks to his enduring partnership with John Wagner, Dredd was to become one of the world’s most recognisable comic book characters, with Carlos there to apply his inimitable style to some of the biggest stories in the strip’s history, such as The Apocalypse WarNecropolis and Origins.  He also illustrated The Wizard, a popular boys’ weekly story paper, as well as cover art for girls’ romances like Valentine and Mirabelle for Pocket Western Library.

{image via Wikipedia}
Carlos Sanchez Ezquerra {image via Javierme}

Ezquerra revealed he had lung cancer in 2010.  The cancer returned earlier this year.  Smoking is much more socially acceptable in Europe than it is in the United States.

Judge Dredd was twice made into a movie, in 1995 starring Sylvester Stallone and in 2012 starring Karl Urban. Neither movie was considered to equal up to the original comic book.

Ezquerra will be missed by comic book fans around the world, but his work will doubtless influence future generations of artists.  

SCIFI.radio offers its condolences to Ezquerra’s family and fans.  We count ourselves among the latter.  

Like many Spanish artists, he worked in British comics because of the favorable rate of exchange between the British pound and the Spanish peseta.  Ezquerra had a more personal reason for working with British comic book companies:  his wife was English.  For a time they lived in Croydon, south of London.  He later settled in Andorra, the small principality in the Pyrenees between France and Spain.

He is survived by his son Hector who inked his pencil work for Strontium Dog: Blood Moon.

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