Thursday, August 21, 2014

VIZ MEDIA ANNOUNCES THE RELEASE OF MORIBITO: GUARDIAN OF THE SPIRIT ANIME SERIES ON DVD AND BLU-RAY

Complete Anime Fantasy Action Adventure From Production I.G. To Be Released On DVD And Blu-ray

San Francisco, CA, August 21, 2014 – VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), the largest distributor and licensor of anime and manga in North America, delivers the riveting anime action fantasy series about a wandering warrior and a fallen prince to fans with the home media release of MORIBITO: GUARDIAN OF THE SPIRIT on August 26th.

The 26-episode series, based on a bestselling collection of Japanese fantasy novels by author Nahoko Uehashi, is rated ‘TV-14’ and will be offered on 4 discs available on DVD and Blu-ray formats. The series will carry a DVD MSRP of $44.82 U.S. / $43.24 CAN; Blu-ray MSRP will be $54.97 U.S. / $66.15 CAN.  The series will also be available for digital download from a range of top media content providers including Apple iTunes, GooglePlay, Amazon Instant Video, PlayStation Network and the Xbox Marketplace on August 26th (English dubbed version) and on September 2nd (Japanese with English subtitles).     

The Blu-ray release features episodes presented in full 1080p High Definition 16x9 video, along with dubbed English and Japanese 2.0 dialogue as well as English subtitle options. The DVD edition features 16x9 Standard Definition video and available English and Japanese 2.0 audio and English subtitle options. Special bonus features for both sets include series trailers, a MORIBITO: GUARDIAN OF THE SPIRIT promotional film, a “Pilot” production film, the series’ official press conference and discussion panels, as well as clean opening and closing segments.

Young Prince Chagum has been suspected of demonic possession by court advisors who see only one solution: death. But his salvation may lie in the hands of Balsa, the spear-wielding bodyguard from Kanbal, the kingdom across the mountains. Her vow to save eight worthy souls has led her to the imperiled Chagum and into the mystery of the water spirit, a mystical entity that may hold the key to saving millions of lives from drought. Her skill and tenacity are legendary, but can she fend off an entire empire?

“MORIBITO: GUARDIAN OF THE SPIRIT is a thrilling anime series with some beautifully rendered artwork and a well developed plot from Production IG that North American action and fantasy fans will not want to miss,” says Charlene Ingram, Senior Animation Marketing Manager. “The stage is set for lots of drama and action as Prince Chagum and his bodyguard journey through dangerous realm to uncover the Prince’s mysterious connection to a legendary water spirit.  We look forward to fans making this new release a riveting addition to their personal anime collections.”

For more information on MORIBITO: GUARDIAN OF THE SPIRIT or other anime titles from VIZ Media, please visit:
www.VIZ.com.


About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, California, VIZ Media distributes, markets and licenses the best anime and manga titles direct from Japan.  Owned by three of Japan's largest manga and animation companies, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., VIZ Media has the most extensive library of anime and manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland and South Africa. With its popular digital manga anthology WEEKLY SHONEN JUMP and blockbuster properties like NARUTO, BLEACH and INUYASHA, VIZ Media offers cutting-edge action, romance and family friendly properties for anime, manga, science fiction and fantasy fans of all ages.  VIZ Media properties are available as graphic novels, DVDs, animated television series, feature films, downloadable and streaming video and a variety of consumer products.

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Moribito_Set01_BD_Comp

© Nahoko Uehashi/KAISEI-SHA/Guardian of the Spirit Committee.
Anderson Cooper Makes His Marvel Comics Debut in November’s BLACK WIDOW #12!
This November, CNN’s own Anderson Cooper makes his Marvel Universe debut for a special, Marvel Comics only, investigative report that begs the question – is the Black Widow truly the Avenger we want? It all happens in BLACK WIDOW #12, as the world renowned journalist and news anchor exposes the tangled web of the Widow’s past discretions, courtesy of critically acclaimed creators Nathan Edmondson and Phil Noto.
Though she now walks a righteous path in her quest for atonement, her past is paved with bloody memories. Though allegedly reformed, is a former KGB operative and assassin the right Avenger to protect the American people? Where do her allegiances truly lie? Those questions and more will be answered in November’s issue!
“It’s Anderson doing what he does best: looking for the truth and reporting on events,” says series writer Nathan Edmondson in an interview with Marvel.com. “We imagine that in Black Widow’s world, as would be the case with many other Avengers, things she does can’t be ignored by the media and all it takes is somebody who knows how to ask the right questions to make her world very uncomfortable for her but in a way that is perhaps not unjust.”
Currently the anchor on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360°, the Emmy Award winning Cooper has spent many years broadcasting from around the world, reporting on up-to-the-minute news and current events.
“I found that he was a comic book fan and reader and shared some of my work with him over a year ago,” adds Edmondson on his inclusion of Cooper in BLACK WIDOW #12. “Then as we were strategizing upcoming issues of Black Widow I had this idea for an opportunity to involve him directly in the book. He was thrilled with the idea.”
Once a resident of the shadows, the Black Widow’s operations have been brought into the light like never before. With the investigation into her actions underway, what will the Avengers do when they learn how she’s been spending her days off? Find out when Anderson Cooper makes his Marvel Universe debut in BLACK WIDOW #12 this November!

BLACK WIDOW #12
Written by NATHAN EDMONDSON
Art & Cover by PHIL NOTO
ON-SALE NOVEMBER 2014!

To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook.

About Marvel: Marvel Entertainment, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, is one of the world's most prominent character-based entertainment companies, built on a proven library of more than 8,000 characters featured in a variety of media over seventy years. Marvel utilizes its character franchises in entertainment, licensing and publishing. For more information visit www.marvel.com © MARVEL
FIRST-EVER MONDOCON ANNOUNCES LINEUP OF
PANELS, SCREENINGS & EXCLUSIVES PLUS ARTISTS, SPECIAL GUESTS AND MUCH MORE!

International array of talent, world premieres, exhibitors and exclusives
descend on MondoCon September 20 & 21

Austin, TX-August 21, 2014-- Mondo is thrilled to announce its programming lineup of panels and screening events for MondoCon, set to coincide with the first weekend of Fantastic Fest on September 20 & 21 at The Marchesa Hall & Theater in Austin, TX. Mondo is creating a convention unlike any other, bringing together unique guests from a variety of areas to celebrate film, music, art, and toys with the world's finest artists, designers, toy creators as well as filmmakers, composers and more.

Panels and screenings will take place in the theater and the exhibition hall will host booths for individual artists and companies featuring artwork and products for sale. The exhibition hall will also offer a unique chance for fans to interact with creators in an intimate environment.

A full service bar and Austin's finest food trucks will be available at the convention, ensuring that attendees will have access to delicious food and beverages.

MondoCon attendees will also be able to take advantage of live screen-printing for t-shirts and exclusive posters throughout the weekend, courtesy of Industry Print Shop. It will be a rare look into the process of screen-printing and the individual stages of poster production.

Below please find information on panels, screenings, artists & exhibitors and MondoCon exclusives.

PANELS

Designing Movies
Panelists: Geof Darrow, Jock, Mike Mignola, Alex Pardee, William Stout and Bernie Wrightson

It could be as small as a weapon or as big as an entire world, but each part of a film is designed by an artist. Who does that? How are the creatures, ships and landscapes of our shared dreams created? MondoCon sits down with six artists who have given form to some of the most iconic imagery in film. They will share stories and art, including pieces that have never been released publicly from the design phase on films like Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ghostbusters, The Matrix, Blade 2, Dredd 3D, Return of the Living Dead and more.

The Art of Toy-making
Panelists: Mike Mitchell, Brock Otterbacher, Dan Willett

Go behind the scenes on the world of collectible toys! The panelists will dive deep into Mondo's brand new toy line with photos and design images from the making of the first lineup of collectibles for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Iron Giant and Alfred Hitchcock. Artist Mike Mitchell will also talk about turning his Lil' Mikey illustration into a 3D figure. The future of Mondo's toy collectibles will be discussed with the announcement of a new vinyl figure from a beloved comic book property.

Geof Darrow's Shaolin Cowboy
Panelist: Geof Darrow

Renowned comic book creator (Hard Boilded, Big Guy and Rusty the Boy Robot) and conceptual film artist (The Matrix trilogy) Geof Darrow will discuss Shaolin Cowboy, including presenting 8 minutes of never-before-seen finished animation from an unproduced adaptation of the beloved cult comic. In 2009 Variety reported that the Wachowski siblings and Circle of Confusion were producing an animated feature of Shaolin Cowboy, but no one has ever seen this footage publicly... until now. Darrow will discuss his history with the project and his experience working on the animation in Japan. This is a unique opportunity for the world to get a first look at a potential anime classic that almost was.

Shaolin Cowboy follows an unnamed former Shaolin monk who wanders the land with a talking mule named Lord Evelyn Dunkirk Winniferd Esq. the Third. Having been "asked" to leave the Shaolin temple, he has since had a bounty placed on his head, which many are eager to collect. Given the Shaolin Cowboy's prowess in martial arts, however, this proves to be very difficult.

"I met Geof Darrow a year ago in San Antonio. During our talk, he mentioned that he once lived in Japan and was working on an anime. My brain broke at the thought of a Geof Darrow anime based on Shaolin Cowboy followed immediately by heartbreak when he said that funding was pulled and the project was canceled. I've always wondered what it would be like. What would a Geof Darrow drawing be like if animated? What would the Shaolin Cowboy look like in action? Good news. All of these questions will be answered at MondoCon," said Mondo CEO Justin Ishmael.

2001: A Lost Score
Panelist: Brian Satterwhite

Mondo is releasing the lost score for 2001: A Space Odyssey on vinyl for the first time ever!

Stanley Kubrick's seminal masterpiece 2001: A Space Odyssey is known for its classical musical cues as much as for its vivid imagery. What few people know is that those cues that are forever associated with the film were a last minute revision on the part of Kubrick. An original score exists, composed for the film by the late composer Alex North (A Streetcar Named Desire, Spartacus) that was abandoned during post-production. North did not know his score was discarded until he saw the film's premiere screening.

Composer and writer Brian Satterwhite will host a panel on the subject, featuring a live presentation of several scenes from 2001: A Space Odyssey with the lost score meticulously reintegrated back to the film to show what could have been.

Working with North's estate, Mondo will release "Music for 2001: A Space Odyssey" in a deluxe package, complete with liner notes by Jon Burlingame. The vinyl will be available for sale at the Mondo booth.

Godzilla 1983
Panelist: William Stout

Long before Gareth Edwards and even Roland Emmerich took on the iconic monster, Godzilla was set to make landfall on American soil, but it wasn't his time. Writer Fred Dekker, FX artist Rick Baker and conceptual artist William Stout were just some of the big names involved in an early attempt at a US-produced feature film in the 1980s that few were even aware existed until now.

Artist William Stout will take the audience through the entire feature film with over one hundred storyboards and conceptual art designs that he created along with Dave Stevens (creator of The Rocketeer) and Doug Widley (creator of Johnny Quest)

Mondo Talk: Art Direct a Poster Live!
Panelists: Justin Ishmael, Mitch Putnam, Rob Jones

Mondo Creative Directors Justin Ishmael, Mitch Putnam and Rob Jones will discuss the creative process behind Mondo's work, showing how the team works with artists to arrive at final images. The panel will include a presentation of alternate poster concepts from previously released prints and reveal new poster designs. The audience will also have the unique opportunity to "art direct" a project live during the panel, adding their feedback and voting on their favorite concept. Mondo will then produce the fan-created project. 

SCREENINGS
Tickets for the evening screenings will be made available to badge holders ONLY via Eventbrite before the convention. Stay tuned to the MondoCon website and @MondoConAustin for screening times, ticket release dates and additional screening announcements.

FUTURE SHOCK! The Story of 2000AD (World Premiere Screening)
A long overdue documentary that tells the story of 2000AD, the unsung cult hero of the comics industry. This film will celebrate and pay respect to the comic and explore its importance and influence on contemporary pop culture. Through in-depth interviews with the creators, writers, artists and fans of the last 35 years, we will tell the story of how this irrepressible, independent weekly comic has survived to have such a widespread cultural impact, not only on the international comics industry but also in film, art and literature.

MondoCon will have the world premiere screening of this documentary on Saturday, September 20. The screening will be free to badge holders with the Mondo poster for the event sold separately following the film. The trailer for FUTURE SHOCK! The Story of 2000AD can be found here.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre with Live Original Score
The most terrifying film of all time will be presented as you have never seen or heard it before. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre will be shown remastered in 4K with an original score performed live at MondoCon on Sunday, September 21. Composers Anton Maoif and Umberto created a completely new score for the film over the course of the last year after conceiving of the idea with Death Waltz records at Beyond Fest last October. This is the first time it will be heard anywhere. The film will also play with the live score at Beyond Fest in Los Angeles on September 27.

Death Waltz records has produced the score and will make it available exclusively at the two shows in Austin and LA. Only 800 copies will be created. The exclusive Death Waltz vinyl will be included in the cost of admission. View a trailer for this very special event here and listen to three tracks from new score on Sound Cloud

Sci-Fi classics Ghost in the Shell and Total Recall (1990) will also have screening events on Saturday, September 20 at MondoCon with brand new Mondo prints included in the cost of admission.

MONDOCON EXCLUSIVES
Mondo will operate a pop up shop in the parking lot of The Marchesa Hall & Theatre with tons of surprises throughout the convention. A few of those are spoiled here. Download artwork via this link.

The Iron Giant Mini-Gallery
Celebrating the 15th anniversary of The Iron Giant Mondo will present a mini-gallery with multiple artists taking on the beloved animated classic. To give a tease of what's to come, Mondo is thrilled to unveil the first print of the event from famed comics artist Alex Ross, working with Mondo for the very first time.

The Iron Giant
Artist: Alex Ross
Edition: 325
15" x 27" Giclee

Additionally, Mondo announces the release of The Iron Giant soundtrack on vinyl for the very first time with two incredible package designs from artists Jason Edmiston and Jay Shaw.

The Iron Giant Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by Michael Kamen
2XLP, Remastered for Vinyl by James Plotkin
Cut at 45RPM for best possible sound quality

Version A - Featuring brand new, hand painted Artwork by Jason Edmiston
Pressed on 180 Gram Black & randomly inserted Steel Grey Vinyl

Version B - Artwork, and package design by Jay Shaw
Pressed on 180 Gram vinyl, housed in a metal embossed slip case.
Limited to 1,000 copies

Boom! Comics & Tyler Stout
Tyler Stout lent his stunning artwork for an alternate cover of Boom! Comics' Big Trouble in Little China #01. The print originally was made available as the official poster for Butt-Numb-A-Thon 9 at the Alamo Drafthouse in 2007 long before Stout was a household name.

ARTISTS, PANELISTS & EXHIBITORS
An expanded lineup of artists, panelists & exhibitors in attendance is below, joining previously announced legends like Basil Gogos, Geof Darrow and Mike Mignola. Bios and information on all special guests can be found at the MondoCon site here.


Oliver Barrett
Richey Beckett
Andy Belanger
Anne Benjamin
Burlesque of North America
Scott C
Chronicle Collecitbles
Becky Cloonan
Daniel Danger
Geof Darrow
Death Waltz Recording Co.
Laurent Durieux
Jason Edmiston
Mark Englert
Brian Ewing
Ferg
Francesco Francavilla
Fright-Rags
Ken Garduno
Basil Gogos
Gordon Video
JJ Harrison
Tom Haubrick
Jock
Bryan Lee O'Malley
Val Mayerik
Middle of Beyond
Mike Mignola
Mike Mitchell
One Way Static
Oni Press
Alex Pardee and Zero Friends
Phantom City Creative
Phone Booth Gallery
Gary Pullin
Retroband
JC Richard
Arik Roper
Tim Sale
Secret Headquarters
Jay Shaw
Skinner
Todd Slater
William Stout
Tiny Kitten Teeth
Kevin Tong
Unbox Industries
Bernie Wrightson
Waxwork Records
We Buy Your Kids


Mondo has expanded in recent years to include a world-renowned gallery, becoming passionate purveyors of art, vinyl, VHS and now toy collectibles. MondoCon will celebrate all of this and more, a chance for fans of film, art, collectibles & music to mix with their creators.

Tickets for MondoCon are on sale now at Mondo-Con.com. Single day tickets are $35 and full weekend tickets are $70. A full weekend ticket to MondoCon will be included with all VIP badges for Fantastic Fest. Both Saturday & Sunday are packed with unique panels, screenings and events!


                                        
Mondo is an art gallery and online store devoted to a passionate love of film, art, music and toys. The company has received global recognition for bringing art back to movie poster design and has emerged as one of the leading curators of classic and contemporary film soundtracks on vinyl. Utilizing the talents of world class artists and designers, Mondo produces limited edition, screen printed posters based on film, television and comic properties, working with the leading entertainment brands including DC Comics, HBO, Marvel, Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios, Walt Disney Studios and Warner Brothers as well as filmmakers like Paul Thomas Anderson, Guillermo Del Toro, Zack Snyder, Quentin Tarantino and Edgar Wright. Based in Austin, TX, Mondo operates out of a permanent gallery space, hosting regular exhibitions featuring a blend of breathtaking original artwork and limited edition screen prints. Mondo aspires to be a creative home for artists and designers to work and have their visions realized, whether through posters, gallery shows, vinyl, apparel or toys. Their first convention, MondoCon, is scheduled to coincide with Fantastic Fest in 2014. Mondo is also recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences with a full archive of film posters as part of their research library. The parent company of Mondo is Alamo Drafthouse. 

THE FADE OUT COMES INTO FOCUS
The most anticipated series of the year sells out immediately


"Brubaker and Phillips's books have always been about eight years
ahead of their time." —Brian K. Vaughan

"Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips are the gold standard of the crime graphic novel." —Warren Ellis

 
THE FADE OUT #1, the debut of the latest series from Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Elizabeth Breitweiser, uncontested noir masters, has sold out immediately at the distributor level with fans, media, and top industry professionals praising the series as the hottest new crime book on shelves.

"This is amazing. I'm totally overwhelmed. I mean, really, whoever thought me and Sean's most lo-fi idea, a noir within the world of noir films, would be our biggest hit ever?" said Brubaker.

Set in 1940s Hollywood, THE FADE OUT begins with a suspicious murder and kicks off an intricate mystery involving a noir film stuck in endless reshoots, a writer plagued with nightmares from the war and a dangerous secret, and a maniacal studio mogul and his security chief who will do anything to keep the cameras rolling before the Post-War boom days come crashing down.

The series launched with a 40-page issue that featured exclusive back page articles. For fans wishing to experience noir fiction in true ‘40s style, an oversized "movie magazine replica" variant edition with 8 extra pages of behind-the-scenes art and articles graced store shelves as well. “I dug The Fade Out by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, Elizabeth Breitweiser and Image Comics so much, I had to buy both versions,” tweeted Tony Guerrero, Editor-in-Chief of ComicVine.

Entertainment Weekly featured THE FADE OUT #1 on its “Must List” while IGN called it “Mad Men but with more sex and murder.” Paste Magazine said of the debut, “Hollywood has never looked so dark, so sinister and so seductive. It’s a story that only a Brubaker/Phillips comic could tell.”

In an in-depth interview with USA Today Brubaker hinted, “Everybody wanted to come to Hollywood and be rich and famous, and very few people are going to get rich and famous. There's going to be a lot of people dashing themselves against the rocks.”

THE FADE OUT #1 has completely sold out at the distributor level, but may still be available in comic stores. It  is currently available digitally on the Image Comics website (imagecomics.com) and the official Image Comics iOS app, as well as on Comixology on the web (comixology.com), iOS, Android, and Google Play.

Image Comics is pleased to announce that this first issue will be going back to print to meet customer demand. The second printing of THE FADE OUT #1 (Diamond Code JUL148170) will release on 9/24.

THE FADE OUT #2 (Diamond Code JUL140545) hits shelves on 9/24.
ABOUT IMAGE COMICS
Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Image has since gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. Image currently has five partners: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino. It consists of five major houses: Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline, Skybound and Image Central. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable. It offers science fiction, fantasy, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. For more information, visit
www.imagecomics.com.
BOOM! Studios Heads to Baltimore Comic-Con for their First East Coast Convention in 2014
  
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 21, 2014 - Award-winning comic book publisher BOOM! Studios is excited to announce it will return to the city of Orioles, crab cakes, and The Wire this year to once again exhibit at Baltimore Comic-Con, which will take place at the Baltimore Convention Center in Maryland, during the weekend of September 5-7.

 
BOOM! can be found at booth number 2001 and will host the following creators all weekend:

 
  • Collin Kelly (Hacktivist)
  • Jackson Lanzing (Hacktivist)
  • Jeff Stokely (Six-Gun Gorilla, The Reason for Dragons, Translucid)
  • Josh Hechinger (The Grave Doug Freshley)
  • Michael Alan Nelson (Day Men, Hexed)

 
The publisher is also sponsoring the appearance of comics legend George Pérez, whose first original series in over 10 years, George Pérez's Sirens, will debut at the show with an exclusive BOOM! Studios variant cover.

 
Other BOOM! Studios creators also appearing at Baltimore Comic-Con include Brian Stelfreeze (Day Men), David Petersen (Mouse Guard), Eric Powell (Big Trouble in Little China), Frank Barbiere (Black Market), James Tynion IV (The Woods, Memetic), Jeremy Bastian (Cursed Pirate Girl), Justin Jordan (Deep State), and Marguerite Bennett (Sleepy Hollow, Butterfly). More guests will be added, so be sure to visit the BOOM! Studios booth (#2001) for the updated booth appearance schedule.

 
BOOM! will also host the following sketch artists at its booth all weekend:

 
  • Andy Hirsch (Garfield, Regular Show)
  • Missy Pena (The Amazing World of Gumball, Bee and PuppyCat, Adventure Time)
  • Travis Hill (Adventure Time)
  • Wook-Jin Clark (Adventure Time: The Flip Side)
  • Cary Pietsch (Bravest Warriors, Adventure Time)

 
For $30, fans can purchase a customized illustration of their choice on a blank sketch cover of an Adventure Time, Bee and PuppyCat, The Amazing World of Gumball, Steven Universe, or Regular Show comic.

 
BOOM! Studios is nominated for 30 Harvey Awards, whose winners will be announced during a ceremony and banquet held during Baltimore Comic-Con on Saturday evening, September 6th.

The Baltimore Comic-Con will be held Friday, September 5 through Sunday, September 7, 2014, at the Baltimore Convention Center, which is located immediately across the street from the historic Camden Yards sports complex (which includes Oriole Park and Geppi's Entertainment Museum). Tickets, a full guest roster, and additional information is available on the convention's website. 
 
Tickets
General Admission and VIP Package tickets for Weekend, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday are now on sale! Visit www.baltimorecomiccon.com/tickets/ for more information and to purchase your advanced tickets now!

Mark Your Calendars!
The Baltimore Comic-Con returns to Baltimore's Inner Harbor in 2015 for another three-day spectacular! Block off Friday, September 25 through Sunday, September 27, 2015 on your calendars now!
  
In the coming weeks, look for more announcements from the Baltimore Comic-Con. We are looking forward to highlighting our guests, the Harvey Awards, industry exclusives, and programming. The latest developments can always be found on our website, Twitter, and Facebook pages.
Harvey Kurtzman Hall of Fame Award Premieres in 2014 at the Harvey Awards
  
Harvey Award Recipient Logo BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 14, 2014 - The Executive Committees of the Harvey Awards and the Baltimore Comic-Con are thrilled to announce the introduction of the Harvey Kurtzman Hall of Fame Award, which will be presented at this year's Harvey Award ceremony on Saturday, September 6, 2014 in conjuction with the Baltimore Comic-Con!

Premiering in 2014, the Harvey Kurtzman Hall of Fame Award honors cartoonists for their significant, cultural impact: men and women who write, draw, and create compelling graphical content that has both artistic excellence and an impact to the culture and the industry. Harvey Kurtzman exemplified that excellence in the extensive catalog of his work and life. We are proud to expand the Harvey Awards tradition with the introduction of the Harvey Kurtzman Hall of Fame Award.

The first Harvey Kurtzman Hall of Fame Award will be presented posthumously to the legendary Charles M. Schulz, the creative genius behind the long-running comic strip Peanuts. Schulz, or "Sparky" as he was affectionately called, was born in 1922 in Minneapolis, MN, and created what is arguably one of the most influential comic strips of all times, setting the scene for what comic strip artists hoped to achieve in readership, draftsmanship, and licensing. After penning a weekly strip for the St. Paul Pioneer Press from 1947 to 1950 called Li'l Folks and, after being dropped from the paper, approached United Feature Syndicate with a new idea that would become Peanuts, which debuted in 1950. The strip, still running today in reprints, would ultimately go on to run in 2,600 papers in 75 countries (and in 21 languages). Schulz created new strips consistently, with the exception of a 5-week break to celebrate his 75th birthday, until the strip's retirement in 2000.

Receiving the Harvey Kurtzman Hall of Fame Award on behalf of Schulz will be Karen Johnson, Director of the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa, CA. The museum houses thousands of original artworks created by Charles M. Schulz for Peanuts as well as letters, photographs, unique Peanuts products, and tribute artwork. It is also home to permanent and rotating exhibitions, as well as a research center with a vast variety of archival information related to Schulz, his life, and his works. Ms. Johnson will be hosting a panel Saturday at the Baltimore Comic-Con, and will be presenting Schulz artwork that no one has seen before.

The eponymous Harvey Kurtzman, who passed away in 1993 at 68 years of age, was a cartoonist, writer, editor and comics genius. He is probably best remembered for his 28 revolutionary issues of MAD, which he founded in 1952 for E.C. publisher Bill Gaines. Kurtzman then created the short-lived satire magazine Trump for Playboy publisher Hugh Hefner in 1957. He followed with the comic-size Humbug in 1958, then Help! magazine (where he discovered such diverse talent as Terry Gilliam, Gloria Steinem, Gilbert Shelton, and R. Crumb). In 1962, he and collaborator Will Elder began producing the long-running and elaborate Little Annie Fanny comic for Playboy. In the '70s he became known as the "father-in-law of underground comix" for inspiring a new generation of media-bending cartoonists. Kurtzman had a great deal of love and admiration for the works of Charles M. Schulz, even creating an unpublished Little Annie Fanny strip featuring Annie as a little girl playing with the Peanuts characters, so it is particularly appropriate for this first award to go to Schulz.
 

 
Said Denis Kitchen, Chairman of the Harvey Awards Committee, "Harvey Kurtzman was a big fan of Charles Schulz. He even envisioned his Little Annie Fanny growing up in the 'Peanuts' universe (see image). I'm confident Harvey would be very pleased to have Schulz be the first recipient of the Hall of Fame named after himself."

"This is a very proud moment for the Harvey Awards," said Marc Nathan, promoter of the Baltimore Comic-Con. "The Harvey Kurtzman Hall of Fame Award begins a legacy of esteemed recognition for some of the most influential and historically significant creators, and we couldn't be more proud to host their presentation."
 
Tickets
Harvey Awards Banquet, and General Admission and VIP Package tickets for Weekend, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday of the Baltimore Comic-Con are now on sale! Visit www.baltimorecomiccon.com/tickets/ for more information and to purchase your advanced tickets now!
 
In the coming weeks, look for more announcements from the Baltimore Comic-Con. We are looking forward to highlighting our guests, the Harvey Awards, industry exclusives, and programming. The latest developments can always be found on our website, Twitter, and Facebook pages.
 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Indestructibles: an ‘indefatigably entertaining’ new superhero novel
A solar powered girl. A ballerina vigilante. A boy with an alien living inside his brain. A werewolf with confidence issues. A girl with a black hole for a heart. Five teenagers, each with their own unique abilities, are gathered by veteran hero Doc Silence to become their generation’s super-team. But when they find out someone else is building their own monsters to change the world, will the Indestructibles be ready in time? Or will their inexperience be their downfall?
Both a coming of age adventure and a love letter to comic book heroes, The Indestructibles, the first book by author Matthew Phillion, is the story of five reluctant super-powered teenagers as they set out to save the world while trying to figure out their own place in it.
“It’s an origin story,” says Phillion. He had developed the characters individually for years before realizing they worked best as a unified team, playing off each others’ quirks, strengths, and weaknesses. “They’re out to save the world, but at times their greatest challenges are their own insecurities and doubts. It’s only after they learn about themselves that they can change the world.”
Superheronovels.com calls the book “indefatigably entertaining,” and writes: “At the beginning of the novel, the Indestructibles weren’t very indestructible. During their first official mission, for example, they looked like a bunch of toddlers in a bouncy castle. But over time, and through experience and good-fellowship, they figured out how to become superheroes. ‘Every so often humanity gets lucky and a hero is born,’ says Doc Silence. ‘And these heroes shine in the sun.’ Three cheers for Solar, Dancer, Fury, Straylight, and Entropy: the five brightest stars in the sky.”
While each of the heroes undergoes a transformative journey, The Indestructibles isn’t just about introspection – the characters must face down everything from a sentient hurricane to giant monsters, armed robots, out of control cyborgs, evil magicians, and even each other.
Sci-fi fans will find a lot of winks and nods to the decades of genre classics that helped inspire the story.
“It’s a self-aware book,” says Phillion. “These characters grew up in a world with its own super-powered heroes, but also a sense of history and pop culture shared with our own. It is almost impossible to tell a story like this without tipping your hat to the past, and the characters, without breaking the fourth wall, are able to let the readers in on the secret handshakes of this genre.”
Phillion wanted this story to avoid the sense that it was a “book for boys” or “book for girls” by focusing on challenges both universal and uniquely personal.
“Each of our heroes must combat the problems inherent with being a young person with their own fantastic challenges – setting barns on fire with your thoughts, sharing your brain with an alien – in a realistic, relatable way,” says Phillion. “They each have a part to play in making the world a better place, but they have to learn how to get out of their own way to get there.”
Pop culture blogger Peter Chianca writes: “The Indestructibles is a so-called YA novel, although to quote Stephen Colbert, that usually just means it’s a regular novel that people actually read. And this one is definitely well-suited to your average 12-year-old superhero fanatic. But if you’re like some of us, you have an inner 12-year-old that you can access at a moment’s notice… and if that’s you, and you know who you are, you’ll probably get as much out of the Indestructibles as any [younger] superhero junkie.”
The Indestructibles is the first in an ongoing series. Book 2, the Indestructibles: Breakout, will arrive in print and e-book formats this October.
Phillion has worked as a journalist, writer, and editor for almost 20 years. He is also the writer, director, and producer of the feature film “Certainly Never,” a romantic comedy about what he calls “the stupid things we do to try to find our own happiness.” “Certainly Never” premiered at the 2013 Massachusetts Independent Film Festival.
Print copies of The Indestructibles are available from independent bookstores everywhere, Ingram, Baker & Taylor, and Books-A-Million (BAM) as well as from Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Digital versions are available in Barnes & Noble NookBook, Amazon Kindle, Apple iBook and Kobo eBook formats.

CRIME AND GLITZ GO HAND-IN-HAND IN BLUE ESTATE

12-issue series gets hardcover collection
in September

The entirety of BLUE ESTATE, the sharply satirical crime Image Comics series created by Viktor Kalvachev and Kosta Yanev, is now being collected into a deluxe oversized hardcover edition in September. As dueling crime families battle in the glitziest and grittiest parts of Los Angeles, Rachel Maddox tries to disentangle her life from her abusive action-hero husband in this Eisner Award-nominated tale of desperate starlets, suspiciously macho actors, bungling mobsters, and hapless private dicks.
Kalvachev’s work on BLUE ESTATE garnered nominations for Best Cover Artist and Best Coloring Eisner Awards in 2012. His stunning painted covers and vivid coloring unite the work of a dozen artists — including Nathan Fox, Tomm Coker, Dave Johnson, Paul Maybury, and Marley Zarcone — whose different styles bring different moods and effects to his and Kosta Yanev’s over-the-top story (scripted with incisive wit by Andrew Osborne).
BLUE ESTATE will be in comic book stores on September 10 and in bookstores on September 23. In addition to collecting all twelve issues of the Image Comics series, it’s packed with bonus material, including Kalvachev’s character and location designs, and an exclusive making-of feature about the 2014 HESAW/Focus Home Interactive Blue Estate video game, released for the PlayStation 4 in 2014, featuring art and character designs.
For more information about all things BLUE ESTATE, visit www.blueestatecomic.com and www.blueestatethegame.com.
BLUE ESTATE: THE GRAPHIC NOVEL by Victor Kalvachev, Kosta Yanev, and Andrew Osborn; Toby Cypress, Nathan Fox, Robert Valley, Peter Nguyen, Tomm Coker, Rev. Dave Johnson, Andrew Robinson, Paul Maybury, Marley Zarcone, Andy Kuhn, Kieran, and Aleksi Briclot
  • ISBN 978-1-63215-138-4
  • Diamond Comic order code JUL140469
  • Hardbound, 288 pages, full color, $29.99
  • In comic book stores September 10, in bookstores September 23
  • Collects issues #1-12 of BLUE ESTATE
  • Rated MATURE
Praise for BLUE ESTATE:
Blue Estate takes the modern understanding of celebrity and culture to a level that graphic literature rarely sees. And it’s violent and funny.” –Michael D. Stewart, PopMatters
“A fun, humorous and fast-paced crime story with art direction that demonstrates that multiple artists isn’t something to be afraid of.”–Dean Stell, Weekly Comic Book Review
“...one of the most consistently excellent comics being published today.” –Kev Weldon, Comic Buzz

Preview

ABOUT IMAGE COMICS
Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Image has since gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. Image currently has five partners: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino. It consists of five major houses: Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline, Skybound and Image Central. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable. It offers science fiction, fantasy, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. For more information, visit www.imagecomics.com.