George Todorovski of the The Bear Stories just sent us an update about the fact that he will be the new artist and co-writer of the Dungeon Crawler Adventures online comic strip starting this coming February: www.dungeoncrawler.com
PRESS RELEASE (Courtesy of Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources)
2011 was a breakout year for Koyama Press that saw the publisher win 2011’s Joe Shuster Award for Outstanding Comic Book Publisher, in a field of nominees that included Canadian publishing luminaries such as Drawn & Quarterly, and several of the publisher’s titles won major industry awards and made a number of “best of” lists. The year finished off on a high note with the launch of a beautiful new website designed by Squidface & the Meddler.
2012 looks to be an equally exciting year for the innovative publisher. Spring 2012 will see a new release from artist and illustrator Jesse Jacobs whose book Even the Giants (AdHouse, 2011) marked his major publishing debut after several award-winning self-published titles. Jacobs describes his new comic work, By This Shall You Know Him, as coming “out of the darkness of oblivion.” Within the book’s confines, Jacobs states that the reader will “bear witness to the limitless ambitions of a gang of celestial beings as they fiddle and fuss with all sorts of molecular arrangements, creating infinitely detailed patterns and strange new worlds brimming with bizarre life forms. Part art-book, part graphic novel, By This Shall You Know Him depicts all manner of beast running, crawling and slithering towards death’s cold embrace.”
Tin Can Forest (aka Pat Shewchuk and Marek Colek) whose Koyama Press debut Baba Yaga and the Wolf was nominated for the 2011 Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent, and won the duo the 2011 Joe Shuster Award for Outstanding Comic Book Cartoonist will release Wax Cross also in spring 2012. The artists describe the new work as “an alchemical folk-tale set in the twilight of the modern age, when the moon has devoured the sun, the mechanical ocean has evaporated into silence, and the decaying corpse of electric current sleeps eternally in a casket of orange lichen. Featuring a cast of characters as familiar as the faded Polaroids in a photo album salvaged from the flooded basement of a condemned church, Wax Cross presents illustrated transcriptions of ectoplasmic revelation, fibrous and grainy folklore, and unbridled bestial merriment, accompanied by textual incantations and occult decoration.”
The New Year will also see Koyama Press publish Lose 4, the most recent issue the critically acclaimed, one-man anthology by Michael Deforge who Rob Clough of The Comics Journal has called “the most startling, fully-formed young cartooning talent to burst on to the scene since Dash Shaw.” 2012 will also see new work by cartoonist Julia Wertz, author of the autobiographical comics The Fart Party and Drinking at the Movies. Her work has received praise from a number of outlets including, Bust, LA Times, USA Today, The Comics Journal, and New York Magazine. Dustin Harbin’s children’s comic The Playground War will debut in the spring as well.
These books are just some of the new titles that are set to be released by Koyama Press in 2012, a year that promises to maintain the publisher’s momentum as they continue to promote and support a wide range of emerging and established artists.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
VANCAF ANNOUNCES INAUGURAL LINE-UP
VANCOUVER, BC: The Vancouver Comic Arts Festival has announced the initial line-up for its inaugural exhibition, taking place May 26th-27th 2012 at the Roundhouse Community Arts Centre. The Festival, which will feature local and international independent cartoonists, will be open to the public and free to attend. The guests will include indie successes such as Jeph Jacques, Ryan North, and Sarah Leavitt, with artists, creators, inkers, colorists, writers, and small press collectives rounding out the exhibitors. Special events taking place throughout the festival will be announced shortly.
Artists wishing to exhibit at VanCAF can apply to do so by filling out the application form on the website at http://www.vancaf.com/exhibitors.php.
Further inquiries can be directed to Shannon Campbell, Event Coordinator, at email@example.com
As announced in today’s PW Daily by Calvin Reid, this holiday season, the Drawn & Quarterly classic graphic novels LOUIS RIEL A COMIC-STRIP BIOGRAPHY and PAYING FOR IT A COMIC-STRIP BIOGRAPHY ABOUT BEING A JOHN by the award-winning and iconoclastic cartoonist Chester Brown, will each be available as ebooks via KOBO’s Vox Reader, it was announced today by Peggy Burns, Associate Publisher of Marketing & Sales. Known for its astute editorial standards and high print production values, this venture marks the Montreal-based company’s first foray into the digital sphere.
“Many people assumed we would never do ebooks, whereas the opposite was true. We were open to the idea, but wanted to approach it cautiously,” said Burns. “This past Fall, we had a fortuitous series of events that brought the project to the foreground. Chester voiced his desire for ebooks, CBC Canada Reads shortlisted LOUIS RIEL in its top-ten for its annual contest, and most importantly, the fellow Canadian company Kobo inquired if we would consider ebooks. Kobo’s pitch was very friendly and nonexclusive and they promote CBC Canada Reads. They understood who we are, our hesitancy and what is important to us. It all happened very organically which is how we prefer to do business.”
D+Q production manager Tracy Hurren oversaw the project and worked with Kobo to ensure that the same care and attention D+Q gives towards its print editions was in place for the ebooks. The arrangement is nonexclusive and D+Q expects to add more titles by different authors and devices throughout 2012.
Lastly, D+Q is proud to announce that the company will be splitting the net proceeds of its ebook sales equally with its authors, and is in agreement with the Writer’s Union of Canada.
“D+Q has always been an author-centric company, it is this ethos that has shaped us into who we are today,” said Chris Oliveros, D&Q’s Publisher and Editor-In-Chief. “It only seemed natural to offer the fairest proposition to our authors.”
Fan Expo Vancouver™ is the city’s very first major comicon.
Highlighting celebrities, shopping, panels and workshops, you will be able to find the newest and hottest in Anime, Manga, Comics, Sci-Fi, Gaming and Horror.
April 21st-22nd 2012, come out and meet your favourite celebrity or creator and shop for the hottest or most rare in comic books, graphic novels, manga, toys, t-shirts and more!
Fan Expo Vancouver™ is brought to you by way of Hobby Star Marketing Inc. HSM was founded in 1992 as one of Canada’s premiere sports and entertainment marketing agencies. The company first staked its claim in 1995 with the successful launch of the Canadian National Comic Book Expo. It has since been re-branded as Fan Expo Canada featuring Comic, Anime, Science Fiction, Horror and Gaming. The event has evolved into a spectacular, annual, multi-media even with prestigious acclaim, becoming North America’s 3rd largest event of its kind.
No guest announcements yet, but there will be postcard distribution to comic stores in BC, Alberta and Washington state on December 28, 2011. As far as I know I will be involved in the event coordinating the Canadian comic guests as well as running the comics programming, as I currently do these services for Fan Expo Canada and the Toronto ComiCONs.
While the announcement is very Hobbystar-centric, it should be noted that we are working with many members of the local comics community, including Vancouver Comicon promoter Leonard Wong, some of the folks involved in the Vancouver Comic Jams, and I’ve been in touch with the organizers of the Victoria Comic Con and VanCAF.
What’s also missing from that initial release is the involvement of the organizers of the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo who are part of this as well and will be helping to run the event, and we are also working closely with the Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle.
The intention of the event is not to step on any toes or alienate anyone but to create a great event in a market that hasn’t had anything like it before.
Courtesy of Marcus To and Ramon Perez:
R.A.I.D. studios expanding!
R.A.I.D. (aka the Royal Academy of Illustration & Design) is planning to expand their current studio to a larger space in the new year. the current studio is home to 7 talented artists; a peppering of the who’s who of the local comic and illustration scene. current members include Francis Manapul, Kalman Andrasofszky, Marcus To, Scott Hepburn, Willow Dawson, Andy Belanger, and Ramon Perez.
The current studio space is about 800sq ft and the new space is closer to 2000sq ft.
Each member will have a 200sq ft space to utilize, a common area with couches, tv, and so forth to just chill out or interact with clients, and a small kitchen, with fridge, mircrowave and toaster, with island is there to eat in should you grow tired of the numerous restaurants and cafes in the area.
The monthly cost of the studio space per member is $300, which also includes internet and telephone.
Speaking of which, the studio is located in Little Italy, just a few blocks west of the Bathurst and College St. intersection.
Space is limited if you are interested, or know of interested parties please contact Ramon Perez at firstname.lastname@example.org
For Immediate Release:
Image Comics Introduces Rebel Blood, a Zombie Story Like No Other
December 9, 2011 — “Save yourself. Stay in the woods. Pray it hasn’t reached the wolves… and keep your gun loaded.” All he knows about what has happened to the world as he knew it has been left in an ominous message. And it’s clear that everything has… changed.
Image Comics and Shadowline are pleased to announce REBEL BLOOD, a new four-part miniseries coming in March with art and concept by Riley Rossmo (GREEN WAKE, COWBOY NINJA VIKING, PROOF) and script by newcomer Alex Link. This gruesome new 21st century zombie outbreak story pays tribute to horror comics’ post-war heyday of titles such as The Vault of Horror, The Haunt of Fear, and Tales From the Crypt, while presenting a concept to rival the best of The Twilight Zone!
“I sketch and paint all the time while I’m working on different projects,” explained Rossmo. “The concept for REBEL BLOOD is something that just began as some sketches, but quickly took on a life of it’s own, to mutate. REBEL BLOOD is what happens when I just run wild with a concept and let it happen.”
“I’m really excited about this project,” said Shadowline Publisher, Jim Valentino. “I’m not a big zombie fan, but this one got me because it was so different than all the others out there. And, I swear, the ending knocked me off my chair. I think it will surprise everyone.”
REBEL BLOOD #1 introduces Forest Ranger Chuck Neville, who, after a strange, unexpected silence, receives a final radio message that a plague is sweeping the country. He learns that the disease has turned every living creature into zombies, all at once rendering the entire animal kingdom unpredictable, violent, and willing to tear apart their neighbors with their bare teeth.
He races home to rescue his family, coming face-to-face with unbelievable horrors along his way and fighting to stay alive. However, when he reaches home, he may find the most horrible part of it all waiting for him…
REBEL BLOOD #1, a 32-page full-color horror comic book for $3.50, will be on sale in stores on March 28 and available for order in the January issue of Previews. A preview of REBEL BLOOD #1 will be featured in the back of both HAUNT #20 (AUG110523), a 32-page full-color horror comic book for $2.99 that goes on sale December 28, 2011, and SPAWN #215 (NOV110468), a 32-page full-color horror comic book for $2.99 that goes on sale January 11,
For Immediate Release
The Comic Legends Legal Defense Fund announces that, 22 years after forming as an ad hoc fundraising organization in defense of a Calgary retailer charged with selling obscene materials, it has at last been formally incorporated. CLLDF Board of Directors member Derek McCulloch says, “It’s a long overdue step, and one we hope communicates our intention to grow the Fund as a bulwark in the defense of free speech in Canada.” McCulloch added that while the Fund has been incorporated with bylaws outlining its mission as a nonprofit dedicated to protecting the free speech rights of Canadian comics professionals and fans, its status as a charity is pending. “The paperwork is in at Revenue Canada,” McCulloch said. “We hope to have charitable status before the end of the year.”
The move toward formal incorporation comes in the wake of the CLLDF’s involvement, in partnership with the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, in the defense of an American citizen facing criminal charges in Canada for comics brought into the country on his laptop.
At the same time, the CLLDF announces that it has expanded its Board of Directors from three members to five. Joining founding Directors McCulloch, Leonard Wong, and Paul Stockton are two prominent Canadian retailers: Jay Bardyla of Edmonton, Alberta; and Jennifer Haines of Guelph, Ontario.
Jay Bardyla is the founder of Happy Harbor Comics, the award winning comic shop located in Edmonton, Alberta that works tirelessly to promote the craft of comics to schools and libraries through free presentations and who keeps its doors open to creators of all types to put their books upon their shelves. A 30 year collector, 24 year employee and 12 year owner in the comics industry, Jay believes he has only begun to understand the industry he loves dearly and looks forward to many more decades of learning about the medium, inspiring others to create comics and to protecting the hobby.
Jennifer Haines opened The Dragon in September 1998 in Guelph, Ontario. Since then, it has gone on to become the Echo Reader’s Choice best comic store in the area in 2009 and 2010, as well as an Eisner finalist in 2010 and 2011. Jennifer has an M.A. in Classical Studies, as well as a B.Ed, which has led her to form comicsintheclassroom.ca, a resource for teachers and librarians. Additionally, she works closely with schools and school boards to help them design specific graphic novel curricula. When she’s not in the shop, she works as a teacher, primarily of Latin and Drama.
I’m very pleased to be a part of such an important organization,” Haines said. “It is vital to protect our freedom of speech by working on cases such as this one. Despite no longer needing the Comics Code to publish and sell comics, it seems comics are still the focus of attack by government agencies as a result of a historic misunderstanding of content. Therefore, we must continue to work to clarify the nature of comics in order to preserve our freedom to produce them, without fear of retribution.
– Jennifer Haines, The Dragon, Guelph, ON
McCulloch says, “We welcome Jay and Jennifer to the Board and very much appreciate their willingness to give of their time and their expertise in support of this important mission. We look forward to working with them in defense of free speech in the months and years to come.”
The Comic Legends Legal Defense Fund was founded in 1987 to raise money for the defense of a Calgary, Alberta comic shop whose owners were charged with selling obscene materials. The CLLDF has since been maintained on an ad hoc basis to provide financial relief for Canadian comics retailers, publishers, professionals, or readers whose right to free speech has been infringed by civil authorities. Largely dormant since the early 1990s, the CLLDF is reforming to provide support for this case, and reorganizing to ensure that help will be readily available for future cases involving Canadian citizens or authorities. To help the CLLDF in this mission, please go to clldf.ca.
Contact Kate McQuaid
416-363-4343 x229 or email@example.com
In this stunning graphic-novel adaptation of Robert Lepage and Marie Michaud’s play of the same name, the personal meets the political, East meets West, and old meets new. Claire, a Québécoise art dealer, arrives in China to adopt a little girl. There she visits her ex-husband, Pierre, who after fifteen years in China has begun
to question the new directions his adopted country is going in. Claire and Pierre’s lover, the young Chinese artist Xiao Ling, become fast friends. Through this classic love triangle, The Blue Dragon examines aging, cultural confusion, fertility, and creativity, and emerges as a fascinating examination of some of modern
China’s most intriguing paradoxes.
Fred Jourdain’s gorgeous, colourful, and cinematic drawings do full justice to the story’s genesis as one of Robert Lepage’s most dazzling theatrical constructions. A feast for the mind as well as the senses, The Blue Dragon is an extraordinary graphic novel for grownups.
Mirvish Productions will present a special two-month run of The Blue Dragon, the show on which this book is based, in Toronto in January-February 2012.
Director, writer, actor Robert Lepage is one of Canada’s most renowned figures the in performing arts. His astonishing oeuvre includes epic plays (The Dragons’ Trilogy, Needles and Opium), award-winning films (Le Confessional, Far Side of the Moon), and even rock shows. A Quebec native, Lepage has been awarded many
prestigious awards and honours, including the Officers of the Ordre national du Quebec, the Denise Pelletier Prize, the Prix Europe, France’s Légion d’honneur, and the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement. He continues to push artistic boundaries, earning his reputation as this
country’s leading creative genius.
Marie Michaud is a prominent Quebecois theatre actress. She has performed over fifty roles with top directors, including Robert Lepage and Denis Marleau (Roberto Zucco and The Old Masters). She is currently starring in the role of Claire Forest in the theatrical version of The Blue Dragon, which she co-wrote with
Fred Jourdain is a designer, best known for his portraits of great jazz, rock, and film figures. His work is currently on display in the Riff exhibit at the Museum of Civilization in Ottawa.
Publication Date: 5 November 2011
978-1-77089-037-4 $19.95 CAD
We acknowledge for their financial support of our publishing program the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, and the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund.
Gallery Closing & Silent Auction
Featuring the book launch for “The Adventures of Herge” with artist Stanislas in attendance
Sunday November 27th, 7pm-11pm
@ Steamwhistle Gallery, 255 Bremner Boulevard (Near Rogers Centre)
Free to attend
The Beguiling Books & Art and Steamwhistle Brewery are teaming to produce one of the most interesting art shows of the fall, TORONTO DRAWS TINTIN. Featuring the work of dozens of comics artists and illustrators from Toronto, and the rest of Canada. Join us for the opening night of this exciting show on November 2nd, and celebrate the legacy of one of comics’ greatest creations!
See the world of Tintin through the eyes of some of Canada’s greatest cartooning talents, including Chester Brown, Michael DeForge, Joe Ollmann, Zach Worton, and Faith Erin Hicks. More information and art previews can be found at http://torontodrawstintin
Many artists will be in attendance — EVERYONE IS WELCOME! This is an all-ages event.
TORONTO DRAWS TINTIN will hang at the Steamwhistle Brewery’s gallery space, for the month of November and close out with a jam-packed celebration of comics, illustration, and art on Sunday November 27th! All art on display will be auctioned off in support of The Comic Legends Legal Defense Fund at that time, and a graphic novel biography of Tintin’s creator Herge will be launched with the French author, Stanislas, in attendance! Come to both events!
This event is sponsored by The Beguiling Books & Art and Steamwhistle Brewery.
I’m happy to report on behalf of the Canadian Comic Book Creator Awards Organization that we have agreed in principle with the organizers of the Montreal Comic Con and will be presenting the 8th Annual Joe Shuster Awards in conjunction with that event on the evening of Saturday, September 15, 2012.
In preparation for the ceremony, the CCBCAA will be working with members of the comics community to provide a fully bilingual awards ceremony, and we are all excited at the possibilities of providing better translation services on this site in order to help spread the word on comics and graphic novels by Canadians in both official languages.
The MCC will also be changing facilities in 2012. It will no longer be held at Place Bonaventure but will be moving into the newer, larger and more colourful (!) convention facilities at the Palais des Congrès in Montreal, QC (pictured, right).
This marks the second time that the Joe Shuster Awards will be presented outside of Toronto. Earlier this year we presented the 7th Annual Awards at the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo. Plans are for the JSAs to be presented in conjunction with a different comic book convention in Canada each year.
The numbers are in! After an enormous year and record-breaking turnout – this years’ final tally of attendees is 77,840! On behalf of Fan Expo Canada™, we want to thank each and every one of you to helped contribute in making this show such a success. Stay tuned on fanexpocanada.com for updates, contests, news and be sure to check out the brand new images from 2011!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
A Worlds First! A new Comic App. Buy Once, Update Forever! By George Peter Gatsis.
The Premise: At large group of misfits, brought together to take on missions too trivial for real space detectives. Among the group is Joe King, Cryplet, Ms. Take and Syntax E.R.R.O.R.
This is a BUY ONCE COMIC APP and the following issues will be updated on a monthly schedule for free. Making this is the worlds first Buy Once/Update Forever Comic Book App! Once you purchase the App, all the updates (or issues) will be free. Issue 1, 2, 3, 4, 5… etc… Every update will have more pages added to the Comic Book App…
Once you buy this Comic Book App… You never have to look at your iTunes account balance to see if you can afford to buy the next issue… ever again.
And for those people considering buying this App, after we have released many updates… Guess what, you get ALL the content as if you had been there at the beginning.
What are you waiting for? Buy the App and your eyes will ogle at the art and your mind will be challenged by the unique adventures (loud echoey voice) IN TIME & SPACE!
Here is the link : http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/tbde-comics-hd/id458270202?ls=1&mt=8
About George Peter Gatsis:
George is a multi-talented artist, creating a wide range of print and video content from Toronto, Canada.
He has been publishing the FIRST Canadian Computer Generated Comic Book series called THE BLACK DIAMOND EFFECT since 1990.
George has assisted in the creation of various publications, most notably:
em>1) Dave Ross’s THRAX (lettering & pre-press production);
2) Dress for Success: The Dirty Baker’s Dozen (pre-press production);
3) my name is SMITH: An Autobiography on the father of Nelvana Animation founder Clive A. Smith.
Max Douglas covers the ending of the Xeric Grant in May 2012 over at Sequential. Many Canadian creators have received Xerics over the years, including Jeff Lemire, Nick Mandaag, Troy Little and Ethan Rilly. The announcement:
The Xeric Foundation’s upcoming 20th anniversary will bring
a changed focus in grant-giving.
“Roughly twenty years ago, I started something called the Xeric Foundation. It came about because, with the success of the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” property that Kevin Eastman and I had created back in 1983, there were a lot of people asking for money. Many of these requests were legitimate and came from real need, and I wanted to find a way to deal with them in a fair and organized fashion.
I also wanted to help out struggling comic book creators. Having started TMNT with Kevin as a self-published venture, I knew very well how critical even a relatively small amount of money could be for success at that nascent stage.
The Xeric Foundation accomplished all that. The Foundation was able to give many grants to self-publishing comic book creators and local charitable organizations. To date, those grants have totaled more than $2,500,000, and those funds were split equally between the two aforementioned categories.
When I began the Xeric Foundation back in 1992, things were very different. The Internet — and web-based publishing — was in its infancy. This has changed, radically, and the Xeric Foundation needs to change accordingly.
The advent of essentially free web publishing has forever altered the way aspiring comic book creators can get their work out into the public eye. With this in mind, I have decided that it makes sense that the Xeric Foundation will no longer provide grants to self-publishing comic book creators, and instead devote all of its available grants funds to charitable organizations.
I’d like to thank all of the people who applied for (and sometimes received) those comic book grants, for their participation in an art form of great merit, as well as those who have applied for (and sometimes received) charitable grants. But I’d especially like to thank all the people who have served on the Xeric Grant committees, both those for the comic book grants and the charitable grants, who have worked without pay all these years, giving of their time and energy, reading and evaluating piles of grant applications. I would like to thank them by name, but — as it has been since the beginning of the Xeric Foundation — they prefer to remain anonymous. So… thank you all, from the bottom of my heart!”
–Peter Laird, July 14, 2011
With this announcement, the foundation celebrates Peter Laird’s legacy and the many innovative comic books that were self-published with the support of Xeric grants.
There will be a final comic book review in May 2012. Details can be found at the following link: FINAL GRANT APPLICATION. Please note that the November review is cancelled, allowing creators more time to prepare and present their best work.
Good luck to all of the dedicated self-publishers. Get in there and show us what you’ve got during the last round of comic book grants!
For Immediate Release
14 July 2011 – Diamond Digital – the joint venture between Diamond Comic Distributors and iVerse Media which will empower brick and mortar comic shops to sell digital content – announced [on July 14] that in September, Diamond’s retail comic shop customers will be able to pre-generate codes redeemable for new digital comics.
The Diamond Digital program, with components in both physical stores and on comic shop web sites, is an initiative unlike anything undertaken in other retail markets. Many of the comics in the program will be available first from comic shops or will contain special bonus material unavailable elsewhere. Participating stores will be able to sell a wide range of new comics, digital back issues and digital backlist graphic novels. A key feature of the initiative is the Print PLUS option, which allows consumers to purchase a digital companion copy of a print comic book, usually for just 99¢ more.
According to Dave Bowen, Director of Diamond Digital, “The September launch date has actually been our target for months, but we didn’t want to announce it until we’d passed certain critical unit testing benchmarks. This worked out well because of the way our Beta Test group of retailers has evolved. After we put together our Beta Test group, an international assembly of more than fifty businesses, the participants suggested many great ideas and improvements, including added functionality in support of the individual retailer web-site based part of the initiative.”
The beta process, supported by close partner and industry technical leader iVerse Media, LLC is now well underway. Michael Murphey, CEO of Iverse said, “Part of the beta test group is currently doing dry-run testing of the web site capabilities we’ve created for them. The advanced group, companies with existing sophisticated e-commerce web sites, are beginning to integrate our API into their processes.”
Bowen says the next phase is to get physical. “In August we plan to beta test new weekly digital comic offerings in the physical stores, giving our code generation and redemption processes a good workout. We’ll also use this time for retailer training with the beta stores and customer service training on the Diamond end. By September we should have a more mature, well-tested process that any store can join with minimal effort.
“All of our Retailer Services will be driven from http://www.diamonddigital.com,” Bowen says. “Retailers can go there now and read the general information about the program. In September, we plan to turn on full login capabilities for all Diamond accounts, including UK and International retail customers. Participating publishers will also be able to log in and see how their material is being represented, monitor their sales, and gauge the effectiveness of the program.”
On the publisher side of the program, Bowen noted that more than 30 publishers—including IDW Publishing, Image Comics, Archie, NBM/Papercutz, and Top Shelf— are currently participating in Diamond Digital, and that the number continues to grow. “We recently confirmed the addition of Image Comics, which is very exciting because it brings a cross-section of creative voices with broad consumer appeal to the program. We’ve also been adding some unexpected publishers like Within Temptation, a symphonic metal band that produces a comic which is integrally tied in to their music. Their lead singer, Sharon Janny den Adel, is providing an exclusive video clip which will be bundled with the digital comic. We’re still in talks with many other publishers and expect participation to expand continuously as a natural part of the business process.
“We’ll be launching Diamond Digital with dozens of new releases and nearly 2,000 back issues,” Bowen added, “many of them graphic novel length. All of those digital issues have been created in the central Diamond system so we can invoice retailers and pay publishers correctly. This is only one of technical challenges we’re meeting as September draws closer, and we are confident that all concerned will appreciate our efforts to get every detail of this launch right.”
For Immediate Release
June 28, 2011
Contact: Elan Freedman
Surge Licensing, Inc.
Surge Licensing Signs Breakout Comics Series – SkullkickersTM
For Exclusive Licensing and Entertainment Representation
The Hangover Meets World of Warcraft in Zub’s Serialized Adventure Series
Jericho, N.Y. — Surge Licensing, Inc., the agency known for developing off-the-wall comic book properties such as the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and, more recently, Axe Cop have signed an exclusive licensing and entertainment agreement with Swords and Sassery, Inc. to develop TV/film, video games, toys, apparel and other tie-ins for Skullkickers – an on-going series published by Image Comics that debuted in September 2010 and continues to sell-out print runs into its second story arc.
Created by Jim Zubkavich and Chris Stevens, Skullkickers is the story of two monster killing mercenaries – a giant bald-headed warrior and a short red-headed dwarf. They’re an odd pairing, a medieval fantasy-esque “Jay and Silent Bob”, in search of fame and fortune. The two adventurers, affectionately known as “Baldy” and “Shorty”, make their living slaying werewolves, necromancers, plant monsters, the undead, and almost anything else readers can imagine from classic fantasy literature and games. Nothing will stop these two from getting paid and enjoying a fine pint of ale.
USA Today describes it best – “Imagine Clint Eastwood’s The Man With No Name, Bad Boys and your local Renaissance festival thrown into a stein of the finest grog in town, and you have a sense of the full-on Skullkickers experience.”
As soon as Skullkickers comics began to hit shelves, issues immediately sold out. The first 3 issues vanished from stores within days of release. The first trade paperback collection quickly followed suit and Image has rushed a new print run to keep up with unexpected demand over the summer. A second trade, collecting the new story arc currently underway, will arrive in time for Christmas.
Skullkickers has been highly praised by pop culture news outlets including MTV, Bleeding Cool, G4 and Ain’t It Cool News, as well as virtually every fanboy site on the web.
“We couldn’t be more excited to work with ‘Zub’ and his team on Skullkickers, a comic with so much whimsy, charm and wit” exclaims Surge’s VP, Elan Freedman, “It’s a story that not only gives the masses a peek inside the fun world of fantasy adventure but rather it entirely busts down the door and brings readers in with a welcome parade of hilarious action and banter.”
Skullkickers’ irreverent approach to classic fantasy, a proverbial buddy cop movie slammed into Conan the Barbarian, plays with cartoonish violence and banter in a way that appeals to young teen boys, older fantasy fans and gamers of all ages.
Ceremony Date: Saturday, June 18th, 2011 – 6-8 PM
Host Event: THE CALGARY COMIC AND ENTERTAINMENT EXPO (June 17-19, 2011)