Category Archives: Press Release

Fantagraphics Co-Publisher Kim Thompson, RIP

We received the following from Fantagraphics on the passing of co-publisher Kim Thompson. Posted without edits.

Fantagraphics co-publisher Kim Thompson died at 6:30 this morning, June 19. “He was my partner and close friend for 36 years,” said Gary Groth.

Thompson was born in Denmark in 1956. He grew up in Europe, a lifelong comics fan, reading both European and American comics in Denmark, France, and Germany. He was an active fan in his teen years, writing to comics — his letters appeared in Marvel’s letter columns circa early 1970s — and contributing to fanzines from his various European perches. At the age of 21, he set foot, for the first time, on American soil, in late 1977. One “fanzine” he had not contributed to was The Comics Journal, which Groth and Michael Catron began publishing in July of 1976. That was soon to change.

“Within a few weeks of his arrival,” said Groth, “he came over to our ‘office,’ which was the spare bedroom of my apartment, and was introduced by a mutual friend — it was a fan visit. We were operating out of College Park, Maryland and Kim’s parents had moved to Fairfax, Virginia, both Washington DC suburbs. Kim loved the energy around the Journal and the whole idea of a magazine devoted to writing about comics, and asked if he could help. We needed all the help we could get, of course, so we gladly accepted his offer. He started to come over every day and was soon camping out on the floor. The three of us were living and breathing The Comics Journal 24 hours a day.”

Thompson became an owner when Catron took a job at DC Comics in 1978. As he became more familiar with the editorial process, Thompson became more and more integral to the magazine, assembling and writing news and conducting interviews with professionals. Thompson’s career in comics began here.

In 1981, Fantagraphics began publishing comics (such as Jack Jackson’s Los Tejanos, Don Rosa’s Comics and Stories, and, in 1982, Love and Rockets). Thompson was always evangelical about bandes dessinées and wanted to bring the best of European comics to America; in 1981, Thompson selected and translated the first of many European graphic novels for American publication — Herman Huppen’s The Survivors: Talons of Blood (followed by a 2nd volume in 1983). Thompson’s involvement in The Comics Journal diminished in 1982 when he took over the editorship of Amazing Heroes, a bi-weekly magazine devoted to more mainstream comics (with occasional forays into alternative and even foreign comics). Thompson helmed Amazing Heroes through 204 issues until 1992.

Among Thompson’s signature achievements in comics were Critters, a funny-animal anthology that ran from 50 issues between 1985 to 1990 and is perhaps best known for introducing the world to Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo; and Zero Zero, an alternative comics anthology that also ran for 50 issues over five years — between 1995 and 2000 — and featured work by, among others, Kim Deitch, Dave Cooper, Al Columbia, Spain Rodriguez, Joe Sacco, David Mazzuchelli, and Joyce Farmer. His most recent enthusiasm was spearheading a line of European graphic novel translations, including two major series of volumes by two of the most significant living European artists — Jacques Tardi (It Was the War of the Trenches, Like a Sniper Lining up His Shot, The Astonishing Exploits of Lucien Brindavoine) and Jason (Hey, Wait…, I Killed Adolf Hitler, Low Moon, The Left Bank Gang) — and such respected work as Ulli Lust’s Today Is the Last Day of the Rest of Your Life, Lorenzo Mattotti’s The Crackle of the Frost, Gabriella Giandelli’s Interiorae, and what may be his crowning achievement as an editor/translator, Guy Peelaert’s The Adventures of Jodelle.

Throughout his career at Fantagraphics, Thompson was active in every aspect of the company, selecting books, working closely with authors, guiding books through the editorial and production process. “Kim leaves an enormous legacy behind him,” said Groth, “not just all the European graphic novels that would never have been published here if not or his devotion, knowledge, and skills, but for all the American cartoonists he edited, ranging from Stan Sakai to Joe Sacco to Chris Ware, and his too infrequent critical writing about the medium. His love and devotion to comics was unmatched. I can’t truly convey how crushing this is for all of us who’ve known and loved and worked with him over he years.”

Thompson was diagnosed with lung cancer in late February. He is survived by his wife, Lynn Emmert, his mother and father, Aase and John, and his brother Mark.

kim-eisners

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Albany Comic Con to hold two benefits for Ronald McDonald House

JoecardFrontThe Albany Comic Con will hold two different benefits to support the local Albany Ronald McDonald House. The first will be a charity art auction that will take place the day of Albany Comic Con, Sunday, June 16 at the Holiday Inn on Wolf Road in Colonie. Professional artists attending the con have donated original sketches done exclusively for the show, which will be auctioned to bidders the day of the show. The convention has held similar auctions the last two years, raising thousands of dollars for the RMHC. “The artwork looks incredible,” said Albany Con promoter John Belskis. “All of this year’s pieces are based on Marvel’s ‘Avengers’ comic-book movie, and I expect them to be very in demand.”

The second fundraiser will feature a comic-book team up between Albany Comic Con and the Tri-City ValleyCats, the Class A affiliate of the Houston Astros. The ValleyCats game will take place 7 p.m. Saturday, July 6, at Joe Bruno Stadium on the campus of  Hudson Valley Community College in Troy. Albany Comic Con will honor legendary comics artist Joe Sinnott, whose work graced almost every major Marvel Comics title in a 63-year career. Dubbed “Meet Joe at the Joe,” the event will give fans a chance to meet Joe Sinnott, receive an exclusive Joe Sinnott baseball card, and get autographs from Joe and other local comic professionals. “Joe’s 63 years as a professional comic artist, working on classic Marvel titles like ‘Fantastic Four,’ and ‘Amazing Spider-Man,’ is an incredible run,” said Belskis. “He truly is a local treasure.”

Albany Comic Con will be selling tickets to the July 6 baseball game. Tickets are also available at Excellent Adventures Comics in Ballston Spa, Comics Depot in Saratoga Springs, and other local comic shops around the Capital District. Game tickets are $5, and come with the Joe Sinnott baseball card. Proceeds from the tickets will benefit the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Albany.

The Albany Comic Con takes place on Sunday, June 16at the Holiday Inn on Wolf Road in Colonie. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission to the convention is still an affordable $5. Tickets for both the convention, and the ACC / ValleyCats night, are available on the convention web site: www.albanycomicbookshow.com.

George Rohac Leaves Oni Press

ONI PRESS’ GEORGE ROHAC MOVING ON TO WHAT PUMPKIN STUDIOS

3275160087_2ca48f7af1_bOni Press announces the departure of valued employee and Director of Business Development, George Rohac.

Rohac started at Oni Press as the Director of Operations in 2010 and played a crucial role in many aspects of the position, including print buying, Scott Pilgrim mania, and maintaining the timeliness of our production schedule. Just recently, George was promoted to Director of Business Development, where he helped secure the projects Penny Arcade and Double Fine Action Comics.

“George is going to be extremely missed. His ideas and work ethic helped further progress Oni Press as one the best independent publishers in the industry,” said president and publisher Joe Nozemack.

George will be moving on to become Director of Business Development for What Pumpkin Studios, best known for the popular webcomic Homestuck.

Oni Press Editor in Chief, James Lucas Jones said, “We have had many successes because of George and for that we are grateful. We wish him the best of luck and look forward to hearing more about his endeavors.”

Founded in 1997, Oni Press, Inc. has become one of the comic industry’s most well respected independent comic publishers; focusing on genre, character, and story driven creator-owned work.

~End Press Release

Bluewater on the Loss of Ray Harryhausen

Bluewater Productions released the following on the passing of Ray Harryhausen.

For immediate release

Today we lost a master magician with the passing of Ray Harryhausen. Although deeply saddened by the loss, we feel that his legendary work will live on forever, and that we at Bluewater were so very fortunate to be a part of that legacy. We send our thoughts and prayers to his wife Diana, his family and to the legion of fans that feel the affect of his passing.

Ray was an inspiration for me. From the first time I saw “Jason and the Argonauts,” and “Clash of the Titans,” I was spellbound. There are no superlatives worthy enough to let him know what his work meant to me. I feel so blessed for the opportunity to have worked with him throughout the years on numerous comic book adaptations, graphic novel sequels and other projects based on his visionary work.  In an entertainment industry dominated by computer generated effects, Ray Harryhausens’s hand-crafted mastery still sparks the imagination like no other—it truly emphasizes the word “special” in special effects.

Ray, thank you for all you given us and the wonderment you left behind. You will be missed.

 

Darrren G. Davis

Publisher

Bluewater Productions

Dylan Meconis Joins PvPOnlinecom Writers’ Room for 15th Anniversary of the Comic!

dylanphotoWebcomic staple PvP began publishing online May 4th, 1998 at a time when the World Wide Web was still dialup and most self-published comics were being printed in zines. Chronicling the tales of a videogame magazine of the same name, PvP and its creator Scott Kurtz became a fixture in the comics and gaming industries over the next decade-and-a-half. For its 15th Anniversary, PvP is again breaking new ground in the comic medium with the creation of the PvP Writers’ Room and the addition of its first new staffer, Dylan Meconis.

“The last fifteen years has been an amazing ride and I’m not interested in stopping anytime soon,” commented series creator Scott Kurtz. “We’ve always tried to stay ahead of the game, remain fluid and never be afraid to experiment. That’s why the creation of the PvP Writers’ Room and bringing in Dylan is the first step of the next decade of PvP.”

“In early January of 2013, as we were in pre-production for our 2nd webcomic Table Titans (TableTitans.com) Scott injured his back. Being laid up and unable to draw for eight hours a day, we reached out for help,” said PvP Director of Business Development and Brand Management Cory Casoni. “I’d met Dylan on several occasions and knew of her love for PvP, so we asked if she’d be willing to fill in for a week. The scripts she delivered were dynamite and one week turned into almost three. That’s when Scott started talking about adding her to the team.”

New writer Dylan Meconis added, “I’m really excited to be working with Scott on PvP. I’ve been an avid reader for years, but when Cory and Scott invited me to fill in, I was surprised by how natural it felt to step into the world of the strip. Being asked to continue as a regular contributor is a delight, not least of all because I might get to talk Scott into drawing things I’ve always wanted to see, like Brent riding a llama. Writing for a beloved daily strip like PvP is a big departure from my previous projects. I’m used to toiling over long stories without the benefit of a collaborator, much less one with the talent and experience of a Scott Kurtz. I can’t wait to see the results.”

“The problem with deadline-based comic strip writing is that sometimes you’re forced to go with your first idea over the best idea.” said Kurtz. “Being a part of a writing team on other projects I learned that with more than one writer, you can get the best idea and maintain the schedule.”

Readers may not realize it but they’ve already been enjoying Meconis’ work. The current PvP storyline, leading up to the New PvP, has all been a product of the combined efforts of Scott Kurtz and Dylan Meconis in the PvP Writers’ Room.

“If you’ve never read PvP now’s the time to start and if you’re a long time fan of the strip get ready for an all new chapter in the series,” concluded Kurtz. “ In just a couple of writing sessions, Dylan and I have laid down the broad strokes for some exciting changes in the PvP comic strip. This is only the beginning of what’s to come. We have big plans, a lot is going to change, and the future of PvP is bright!”

IDW Limited Gets Dangerous!

Today, IDW Limited announced plans to offer more limited-edition covert action with a deluxe hardcover of Danger Girl/G.I. JOE. This action-packed crossover will be presented in spectacular fashion with both Black and Red Label editions poised to infiltrate the top shelf of collectors everywhere.

“The great thing about DANGER GIRL/G.I. JOE,” said John Royle, “is you don’t have to know these characters to know you’re going to enjoy this book. This is a perfect jumping-in point and a great read for longtime fans. It’s fun from the first page to the last and that’s exactly what this limited-edition version gives you. From case to cover, it’s all fun and all action!”

DANGER GIRL/G.I.JOE Limited Edition will be presented in two tiers of increasing rarity. The Red Label edition will be limited to just 175 copies, each of which is hand-numbered and signed by DANGER GIRL co-creators J. Scott Campbell and Andy Hartnell, and series artist John Royle.  The Black Label edition will be housed in a hand-built tray case and limited to only 50 copies, with each signed by the same lineup of talented creators and featuring a hand-drawn piece of art from the amazing John Royle.

DANGER GIRL/G.I.JOE is all about being over-the-top,” said IDW Limited director Jerry Bennington. “The biggest explosions, the most unforgettable Femme Fatales, the ninja-est ninjas! Everything has to be larger-than-life and that’s exactly what IDW Limited delivers with this edition. The awesome cases, the killer new covers, and the amazing artwork from John (Royle). This book EXPLODES off the page. Seriously, we tried to add a detonator but they said something about compliance issues…”

Whether you’ve got to scuba through shark-infested waters or rappel through Cobra’s rooftops, do whatever’s necessary to get to IDWLimited.com today and secure your copy.

DANGER GIRL/ G.I. JOE DELUXE LIMITED EDITION (RED-$95; BLACK-$300; 124 pages; 10” x 6.5”; Tray Cased Hardcover)

Tickets are Now On Sale for the 2013 Baltimore Comic-Con!

The Baltimore Comic-Con is happy to announce that tickets are now on sale for this year’s show, taking place September 7-8, 2013 at the Baltimore Convention Center in downtown Baltimore.Tickets that are now on sale include: General Admission for Saturday and Sunday, Two-Day General Admissions, and Baltimore Comic-Con 2013 VIP Experience Packages.

The 2013 VIP Experience Package includes:I'll See You In Baltimore 2013

  • Admission to both days of 2013 Baltimore Comic-Con
  • “First on the Floor” VIP early admission at 9:30am both days of the show
  • VIP Priority Access to Panels and Presentations*
  • A 2013 Baltimore Comic-Con T-shirt
  • Collectible 2013 Baltimore Comic-Con VIP Badge and lanyard
  • Collectible 2013 Baltimore Comic-Con Hardcover Yearbook
  • And much, much more to be announced as we get closer to the show!

* VIP ticket holders must be in the VIP line 30 minutes before scheduled presentation times, as VIP Seating is guaranteed but not reserved and does not include special ticketed events.

“Last year was our biggest show ever, not only in terms of guests, retailers and exhibitors, but in attendance as well,” said Marc Nathan, show promoter for the Baltimore Comic-Con. “Offering the fans the chance to purchase advanced tickets online really streamlined entrance to the show, so we’re doing it again this year! In addition, all of our VIP Packages sold out last year, so this is a great opportunity for those who missed out to get in on the VIP action early!”

Visit www.baltimorecomiccon.com/tickets/ for more information and to purchase your advanced tickets!

This year’s confirmed guests for the show include: Brian Bolland (Dial H); Mark Buckingham (Fables); Jimmy Cheung (Avengers vs. X-Men); Frank Cho (Savage Wolverine); Amanda Conner (Before Watchmen: Silk Spectre); J.M. DeMatteis (Phantom Stranger); David Finch (Justice League of America); Dave Gibbons (The Secret Service); Keith Giffen (Masters of the Universe); Adam Hughes (Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan); Barry Kitson (Empire); Roger Langridge (Popeye); Paul Levitz (World’s Finest); Kevin Maguire (World’s Finest); Mike Mignola (Hellboy In Hell); Jimmy Palmiotti (Batwing); George Perez (World’s Finest); David Petersen (Mouse Guard); Joe Prado (Earth 2); Ivan Reis (Aquaman); Chris Samnee (Daredevil); Louise Simonson (X-Factor); Walt Simonson (The Mighty Thor); Allison Sohn (sketch card artist); and Mark Waid (Indestructible Hulk).

Joshua Dysart Now Exclusive at Valiant

HWARS_001_COVER_FINALValiant has announced that New York Times best-selling writer and Eisner Award nominee Joshua Dysart has signed on as the publisher’s next exclusive creator. Dysart is currently scripting and co-plotting the Harbinger Wars crossover and mini-series for Valiant, in addition to his writing duties on the ongoing Harbinger series.

“Comics is a business, but it’s also a community and a family. From the moment I met the ragtag skeleton crew that work tirelessly to hoist the Valiant flag, I felt like I’d found my next comic book family,” said Dysart. “When I first met Dinesh, the CEO of Valiant, he was carrying a box of comics along with his marketing crew, like he was just another boy in the band. That’s what I like. I like it rugged and I like it scrappy.

“I believe Valiant can change things for the better in superhero comics. I believe small is good. I believe in every single member of this team, from management to marketing. And most of all, I believe in and trust my editor, Warren Simons. These guys took a huge chance on me. They saw ‘Unknown Soldier’ and they said, ‘That dude should write superhero comics.’ They gave me the freedom to create challenging characters and build new worlds.

“So that’s it, I’m in this. This is my next thing. I want to write Harbinger for a long time and I’m super excited to be developing my next big top secret project for the Valiant Universe. So if family, creativity, innovation and loyalty aren’t reasons to commit to a business venture like this, then I don’t know what is.”

From 2008 to 2010, Dysart authored a two-year run on Vertigo’s Unknown Soldier with artist Alberto Ponticelli, garnering an Eisner Award nomination for Best New Series and widespread critical recognition in the process. Dysart has also contributed to some of the most acclaimed series and projects of the past decade, including B.P.R.D., Swamp Thing and Neil Young’s Greendale.

“Joshua has a singular voice in the world of comics, and he brings an extraordinarily poignant and rarified point of view to the page,” said Valiant Executive Editor Warren Simons. “His phenomenal work on Harbinger over the course of the past year and the tremendous reaction to last week’s release of Harbinger Wars #1 speak for themselves. Everyone at Valiant is look forward to more great stories from Joshua and we couldn’t be more excited about his plans for Harbinger coming out of Harbinger Wars.”

Dysart’s first Valiant work, Harbinger #1, was released in June 2012 as the second title of the Valiant relaunch. His work on the series has drawn near-universal accolades from fans and critics, cementing Harbinger as one of Valiant’s best-selling titles.

Dysart has also played a key creative role in co-architecting the Harbinger Wars crossover event, going so far as to co-create two dozen new super-powered heroes with Harbinger artist Khari Evans. This team of characters, collectively known as Generation Zero, can next be seen in the pages of Harbinger Wars #2 (of 4), in stores May 1st. They also feature prominently in the upcoming Harbinger Wars: Battle for Las Vegas 8-bit mobile game, the first level of which will be released for free on iOS and Android devices on May 2nd.

Dysart joins Eisner Award-winning artist Cary Nord as the next addition to Valiant’s roster of exclusive talent.

Wizard World, Inc. Announces Approval For Listing On OTC Bulletin Board (OTCBB)

Wizard World, Inc. Announces Approval For Listing On OTC Bulletin Board (OTCBB)

February 19, 2013 — New York, New York – Wizard World, Inc. (the “Company”) (OTCBB: WIZD), a producer of Comic Cons and pop culture conventions, is pleased to announce that it received approval from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for quotation and trading on the Over-the-Counter Bulletin Board (OTCBB) under the stock symbol “WIZD”.  The Company’s common stock will continue to trade on the OTCQB.

Mr. Macaluso, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer, stated, “Having our Company approved for a quotation on the OTCBB is part of our ongoing efforts of increasing Company transparency and increasing our access to the investment community. In addition, we will continue moving forward on additional initiatives aimed at increasing consistent investor awareness with the ultimate goal of applying for a listing on a more senior exchange.”

About Wizard World:

Wizard World, Inc. produces Comic Cons and pop culture conventions across North America that celebrate graphic novels, comic books, movies, TV shows, gaming, technology, toys and social networking. The events often feature celebrities from movies and TV, artists and writers, and events such as premieres, gaming tournaments, panels and costume contests.

Wizard World’s full event schedule can be found at www.wizardworld.com.

Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

Statements in this press release relating to Wizard World, Inc.’s future plans, expectations, beliefs, intentions and prospects are “forward-looking statements” and are subject to material risks and uncertainties. When used in this press release, the words “will,” “future,” “expect,” “look forward to,” similar expressions and any other statements that are not historical facts are intended to identify those assertions as forward-looking statements. Any such statement may be influenced by a variety of factors, many of which are beyond the control of Wizard World that could cause actual outcomes and results to be materially different from those projected, described, expressed or implied in this press release due to a number of risks and uncertainties. Accordingly, no assurances can be given that any of the events anticipated by the forward-looking statements will transpire or occur. A detailed discussion of these factors and other risks that affect Wizard World’s business is contained in its SEC filings, including its most recent reports on Form 10-Q, particularly under the heading “Risk Factors.” Copies of these filings are available online from the SEC or by contacting Jerry Milani, Public Relations, at (212) 209-3879.  All information set forth in this press release is current as of February 19, 2013. Wizard World undertakes no duty to update any statement in light of new information or future events.

Kevin Keller Nominated for GLAAD Media Award

KevinKeller#8The GLAAD Media Awards nominations have been announced and Archie Comics is proud to count Kevin Keller amongst its nominees. This is the third nomination for the Kevin title in this category since the character’s debut in 2010, earning a nod each year it was eligible.

 “We are so thrilled for Kevin to be honored this way,” said Archie Comics Co-CEO Jon Goldwater. “Archie’s pal Kevin has been a perfect addition to the gang. It’s hard to imagine Riverdale without him.”
“Archie Comics continues to be ahead of the curve, paving the way for characters like Kevin to be represented in mainstream comics,” said Archie Comics President Mike Pellerito. “Riverdale is, and will always be, a place that embraces diversity.”
2012 was a landmark year for Kevin, which saw the character transition from a mini-series into the launch of an ongoing title as well as his highly publicized wedding in the pages of Life with Archie. The critically praised comic capped the year with a guest appearance from the legendary Star Trek actor George Takei whom Kevin idolizes.
“I applaud a forward thinking comic like Kevin Keller and am flattered to be a part of it,” said George Takei of his guest spot. “Comics play an important role in contributing to a healthy, sociable community and Kevin is a great role model for the youth of America. I am delighted to see GLAAD recognize it.”
Kevin continues to make appearances in high profile Archie projects including last year’s Archie Meets KISS and the upcoming Archie Meets GLEE crossover. This spring Kevin will also make the leap into books with a young adult novel published by Penguin Young Readers Group.
Created by Dan Parent, Kevin Keller first appeared in Veronica #202, the first comic to go to a second printing in Archie Comics history. Parent continues to write and draw the adventures of Kevin Keller into 2013.
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