Introduction: In Search of Dan Cooper (01:32)
Director Guilhem Rondot grew up in Europe, reading comic books about Canadian fighter pilot Dan Cooper. He wants to find out why the famed pilot is nearly unknown in Canada.
Who Was Dan Cooper? (02:05)
Dan Cooper was one of Europe's most popular series for more than 40 years. His adventures spanned the globe throughout the Cold War.
Comic Book Character (02:44)
Created by Albert Weinberg, Dan Cooper was an everyday hero, a friendly Canadian who had a dream job.
Jet Pilot (02:23)
Dan Cooper was a role model for Pierre Rochefort. He became the youngest Canadian fighter pilot in 1975 and met Albert Weinberg, when the artist was doing research for a later Cooper book.
Albert Weinberg (01:57)
Belgian student Weinberg encountered Canadian soldiers during World War II. He began drawing comic books for an income while attending law school.
Technical Design (02:05)
Weinberg had a passion for aircraft technology; his drawings are highly detailed and technically accurate.
One of the Guys (02:38)
A neighbor who worked at the Canadian embassy helped Weinberg gain access to bases for research. Weinberg loved interacting with the real-life pilots that were part of Dan Cooper's world.
Dan Cooper unlocked a wider knowledge of the world for his readers. His lesser-known homeland and the many countries he visited caught their imagination.
Comic Books (02:15)
Weinberg was very disciplined and professional toward his creation. He created the script and sketches, and he inked and colored the comic.
Dan Cooper was popular because of the escapism the series offered. Each of his books sold an average of 500,000 plus copies.
Dan Cooper's Planes (03:07)
Dan Cooper flew most of Canada's military airplanes. When Canada began talking of updating its fleet in the 1970s, Dan Cooper immediately started flying the new models.
Weinberg was careful not to reveal technical information that could be damaging. The Canadian military gave him almost complete access to their bases, and he took their trust seriously.
Cold War (02:11)
The Cold War led Canada to station a large air force presence in Europe.
National Museum of Aviation Exhibition (02:37)
The director of the Canadian museum of aviation decided to do an exhibit on Dan Cooper. Because the comic was not published in English, he jokingly presented Cooper as a real person.
Open Canada (02:11)
Weinberg incorporated diversity into his comics. Many English-speakers don't know Dan Cooper, because the stories were never published in English.
D.B. Cooper (03:47)
In the United States, Dan Cooper's name is associated with an unsolved 1971 hijacking. Weinberg believed a connection existed.
Classic Heroism (03:02)
Dan Cooper has no flaws and he always does what is right. Modern-day comic book characters are full of flaws and contradictions; they are protagonists.
Cooper's Values (01:38)
Despite the tragedy of Dan Cooper's lost love, he never strays from his core values of altruism and compassion.
Cooper Closure (04:13)
Weinberg believed that human beings were good. He was meticulous and his creation was an extension of his own personality. He died on September 29, 2011.
Credits: In Search of Dan Cooper (00:46)
Credits: In Search of Dan Cooper
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