On Gear Live: Giveaway: Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey on Blu-ray!

Sym-Bionic TitanASIFA-Hollywood announced their nominations for the 38th Annual Annie Awards this past week.

The essential animation blog, Cartoon Brew, has a complete list of the nominations.

If you like controversy, be sure to read the comments, too!

A couple of people with comic book connections popped up on the list of nominees.

Stephen DeStefano, artist on Lucky In Love from Fantagraphics, is up for Character Design in a Television Production for his work on the Cartoon Network series Sym-Bionic Titan.

Phil Hester and Andy Kuhn’s Image Comic Firebreather, the Cartoon Network original movie that aired at the end of November, got itself two nominations. In the category Production Design in a Television Production, Barry Jackson is one of the nominees. In the category Directing in a Television Production, director Peter Chung was nominated as well.


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Hagar The HorribleIf you need to take a break from Christmas shopping and sit down in front of a warm computer and fill your body with the sweet, sweet taste of egg nog, here are some nice links to keep you company.

I love Christmas cards from cartoonists, and Hogan’s Alley has posted a whole pile of them from Dik Browne, creator of Hagar The Horrible and one of the greatest cartoonists, ever. As if that weren’t enough, there’s this: “Every year since 1936, the Newspaper Enterprise Association has syndicated a Christmas strip. In 1968, Jack Kent produced a daily-only King Aroo sequence, which we are thrilled to present here!”

Castle: If you like Nathan Fillion’s TV series, you’re not alone. Here’s what one loyal fan created.

Amazons: David E. Kelley talks about his Wonder Woman project. The bottom line: don’t get your hopes up.


Gen 13 #1Wildstorm – the once-formidable imprint of DC Comics - is officially shutting down this month and that makes me sad.

I have friends who work there (many of whom I'm happy to say are staying on to work for the corporate parent), but I was also present at its fairly official formation.

I was sitting in Marc Silvestri's beachfront apartment in Malibu, attending a meeting of the Image founders while they were putting together what would become Image Comics. I was there as a representative of Malibu Comics along with Malibu Publisher Dave Olbrich and Editor-In-Chief Chris Ulm.

Image was represented by Silvestri, Rob Liefeld, Todd McFarlane, Erik Larsen, Jim Valentino, Jim Lee, and Whilce Portacio. Hank Kanalz was also there. He was Rob's co-writer on the soon-to-be published Youngblood #1, and years later eventually became the head of Wildstorm. (I have a photo of Hank videotaping the meeting so there's archival footage lurking somewhere.)

Dave and Rob had known each other for years, and if you corner Dave at a convention, he can tell you the story of how Malibu nearly published a version of Youngblood #1 years before the formation of Image, and before Rob started working for Marvel.

Image had scheduled several meetings at the beach that day and Malibu Comics was the first one. The publisher of Wizard, Gareb Shamus, would later drop by, as would Harold Anderson from Anderson News, the newsstand distributor.


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Betty And VeronicaIf you took the time to read through the nearly 250,000 documents released this week via Wikileaks, you’d find a comic book connection in several of them. We at Comix 411 have nothing but free time and did the heavy lifting for you. Here are the comic book-related highlights from the document dump:

When visiting with US President Barack Obama, the CIA codename for Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is “Bucky.”

Interrogators at Guantanamo routinely asked prisoners to choose: Betty or Veronica?

Supreme Leader of North Korea Kim Jong Il sometimes dresses up as Wildcat before he tours a factory. In other news, North Korea still has factories.


Firebreather Variant CoverNovember looks like it was quite the month for Phil Hester (and Andy Kuhn).

It began with the announcement that writer J. Michael Straczynski would be stepping down as the writer of Wonder Woman (and Superman) for DC Comics. That same announcement was accompanied by the notice that Phil Hester would be the new writer on WW, effective with Wonder Woman #605. Sweet.

On November 24 (this week, by the way, mark your calendars), Cartoon Network is debuting a brand new animated movie based on Firebreather, the Image Comics series Hester co-created and writes for artist and co-creator Andy Kuhn to draw.

Writing at his blog, Kuhn posted of the film: “It's incredible. I knew the story and I still got caught up.” It’s nice to see creators pleased with an adaptation of their work!

If you want a peek, check out this Firebreather trailer at the Cartoon Network website. The movie was written by Jim Krieg (Ben 10, Batman: The Brave And The Bold) and directed by Peter Chung (Aeon Flux; Animatrix). It looks like something we all need to be checking. Make the appointment, old-school style with your TV or just set the DVR.


Lynda CarterIt’s been a great internet this week, so let’s take a look!

Comics & Media: There’s someone out there who believes that The Walking Dead comic books and trade compilations won’t see a boost in sales despite the tremendous success of the new TV series. Dirk Deppey delivers the smackdown and makes me wish I could write like that. (Scroll down a little.)

I only have anecdotal “evidence” about the book’s success from this year’s San Diego Con. I saw The Walking Dead booth doing tremendous business, and by Friday afternoon, they’d sold out of all the Volume 1 compilations they’d brought to the show (which still had more than two days to go).

And speaking of smackdowns, Lynda Carter tells Megan Fox to STFU.

P. Craig Russell: Want to have a sneak peek at his upcoming digital comic, The Gift of the Magi? I know you do.


Remember that whole digital thing that’s supposed to knock off the printed comic book? Oh wait, that’s still happening!

If you want to be part of the industry now that we’ve passed “peak comic book,” ComiXology the “digital comics leader” is looking for a couple of new people.

First up is a LAMP Developer, someone with “2+ years of experience with Linux, Apache, mySQL and PHP. Additional experience with AJAX/JavasScript/HTML5 (jQuery), XML, HMTL, XMLRPC, SOAP and other development environments is preferred.”


Breed 3Since he’s posted it on Facebook, I’m guessing it’s not much of a secret anymore.

Jim Starlin is preparing 'Breed III, the third mini-series of his creator-owned property. The 7-issue series will debut in the summer of 2011 from Image Comics.

Jim will be writing, drawing and coloring the series. And, according to his Facebook post, “This mini will conclude the 'Breed storyline from the original 'Breed and 'Breed II series. The two previous 'Breed series will be collected, reprinted and on sale next summer also.”

I can’t wait.

Breed #1 was the lead-off book for the Bravura imprint for which I was the Line Editor. That was my official title, but I was more like consulting editor.

Starlin, Howard Chaykin, Walter Simonson, et al, don’t need story direction for their creator-owned projects; I was just there to check spelling and pagination and hang out with some of my favorite creators (until I was stolen away to work on something else).


Walking DeadHappy Halloween to all of you!

My costume this year is simple - I’m going to walk around with my iPad and call myself The Future Of Comics. Which, I admit, is something I do pretty much every day.

First off, congratulations to my pals at Boom! Studios and their sales on Stan Lee’s Soldier Zero #1. And kudos to Boom for sharing their actual numbers.

And if you’d like a 10-page freeview of the November release of Stan Lee’s The Traveler #1 by Mark Waid and Chris Hardin, Scoop has that for you too.

Let’s see what else is out on the internets...

Zombies: Pop culture historian Jim Beard writes about the Walking Dead phenomenon that will soon be sweeping the nation thanks to the new AMC TV series.

Beard, by the way, is the editor of a new anthology that looks back at the Batman TV series of the 1960s, Gotham City: 14 Miles.


Jim Lee And Rob LiefeldSo did you hear the big news? Marvel’s moving to a new office building in Manhattan!

Not to be outdone, Warner Bros. decided to shake things up with a large scale corporate shift. This interview with Diane Nelson from Comic Book Resources actually sheds very little light on the nuts and bolts of it.

And the lack of real answers has caused Tom Spurgeon to raise some questions he’d like to see answered about the situation forward-going.

Naturally, and because I sometimes can’t keep my mouth shut, I have my own take on the matter.


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