Graphic novel

Stéphane Melchior returns from a residency in Cambodia and Vietnam

My ideas can come at any time, I write them down in a notebook that I call my workshop, and little by little the stories emerge.

Comics author Stéphane Melchior adapts sagas and novels to translate the written word into drawings. He has just completed a 12-week residency in Cambodia and Vietnam as part of the "Route des Résidences" programme launched in 2022 by the Instituts français of Vietnam and Cambodia. It is one of the residencies supported by the Institut français' Fabrique des Résidences last year. 

Published on 08/03/2023

5 min

Stéphane Melchior is a French cartoon and comic book writer, born in 1965 in Rennes (Ille-et-Vilaine). He first studied art history at the École du Louvre and the Sorbonne, before becoming an editor at Flammarion in 1994. Concurrently, he was also working as an author on the "Abécédaires histoire de l'art" collection, which he directed from 1995 onwards. Successively editor-in-chief of special issues of Beaux Arts Magazine and then development director at Gaumont Multimedia, he decided in 2001 to devote himself to writing screenplays. After writing for the cinema, he specialised in comics and enjoyed success in 2008 with Supermagic Girl (drawings by Raphaël Beuchot), followed by Raiju (2008) and Raiden (2009), a series recounting the adventures of a strange feline samurai drawn by Loïc Sécheresse. This allowed audiences to discover his singular writing style, shaped by humour. 

Stéphane Melchior continued his collaboration with Loïc Sécheresse in 2011 with Hécate & Belzébuth, which tells a love story in the kingdom of the Underworld. He also adapted The Great Gatsby with illustrations by Benjamin Bachelier in 2013, then the fantasy series The Northern Lights, by author Philip Pullman, alongside Clément Oubrerie. The first volume of this saga, which was a great success, was awarded the Fauve for best Young Adult graphic novel at the Angoulême Festival in 2015. The following year, he collaborated again with Benjamin Bachelier, this time tackling the American author Henry Melville with Taïpi, un paradis cannibale, published by Gallimard. In 2020, he worked with Vincent Sorel on Les Aventures du Roi Singe, adapted from a great classic of Chinese literature, the second volume of which was published in 2022. Stéphane Melchior has established himself as an author capable of adapting long, often complex stories to a format accessible to a young audience. 

Stéphane Melchior has long been fascinated by mythology, particularly Japanese and Chinese, and has written stories that transport his readers to the four corners of the world. While he has drawn stories from classics such as the Iliad and the Odyssey, he has also worked on numerous oriental legends, from the character of the Monkey King to the world of the Japanese yokai. Recently, his adaptation of Le Clan des Otori (with Benjamin Bachelier) took us to feudal Japan. For his latest project, he was in residency at the Institut français of Vietnam and Cambodia until 1 March 2022, part of the first edition of the "Route des Résidences" regional programme launched in 2022. This was an opportunity to meet local players in the world of publishing and comics, and to revitalise exchanges with local French-speaking authors. 

  • 2014


    Les Royaumes du Nord, with Clément Oubrerie, Fauve d'Or at Angoulême.

  • 2020


    Les aventures du Roi Singe, with Vincent Sorel.

  • 2021


    Adaptation of Le Clan des Otori.

  • 2023


    Residencies in Vietnam and Cambodia.

L'institut français, LAB