DC and Marvel both drop prices

201010072036.jpgAt today’s ICv2 conference, people were moaning about prices, Laura Hudson reported:

The complaint of high prices was discussed as well, along with the statistics that the average cover price of a comic book in the second quarter of 2010 is now $3.53, up from $3.38 in 2009. “Overall, [fans] are paying more for the same type of content than they were two years ago,” said Griepp.

And lo and behold, just as we were wrapping our digital and creative panel, the press release below came over everyone’s smart phone, announcing that DC would be going back to the $2.99 price point, while cutting down to 20 pages of story a month from 22. Frankly, given today’s storytelling, the same stories can be told just as well in 20 pages as 22, and if creators are willing to make a little less money for more greater sales, then so be it.

Even as the room was buzzing about the news, David Gabriel, Senior VP of Sales & Circulation at Marvel, said that due to digital sales increasing, print sales are increasing, and prices are decreasing: “The other thing that I’m going to announce here is that there has been a lot of talk I heard about the price increases. Because of some of the digital sales, we’ll be going back to $2.99 for some titles in January.”

Reached after the panel Gabriel confirmed that “selected” Marvel titles — including new titles — would be priced at $2.99. There will be no reduction in story pages. He said the announcement was not because of DC’s news, and  genuinely seemed not to know that the DC news had just broken.

Without nailing down what titles will be at what price, it sounds like not all prices are rolling back, as DC is doing. Instead, new titles will go back to the $2.99 price point.

Developing, as they say, and sure to be a hot topic on tonight’s packed party schedule. More later!

DC’s PR:

Beginning January 2011, DC Comics will implement a line-wide pricing adjustment, lowering the prices of all standard length 32-page ongoing comic book titles currently priced at $3.99 to $2.99,  it was announced today by DC Comics Co-Publishers Jim Lee and Dan DiDio.

“Today’s announcement re-affirms DC Comics’ commitment to both our core fans and to comic book store retailers,” said Jim Lee, DC Comics Co-Publisher. “For the long term health of the industry, we are willing to take a financial risk so that readers who love our medium do not abandon the art form.”

“As Co-Publishers, we listened to our fans and to our partners in the retail community who told us that a $3.99 price point for 32 pages was too expensive. Fans were becoming increasingly reluctant to sample new titles and long term fans were beginning to abandon titles and characters that they’d collected for years.” said Dan DiDio, DC Comics Co-Publisher. “We needed a progressive pricing strategy that supports our existing business model and, more importantly, allows this creative industry to thrive for years to come. With the exceptions of oversized comic books, like annuals and specials, we are committed to a $2.99 price point.”

When taking into account mini-series, annuals and specials, more than 80% of DC’s comic books will be priced at $2.99.

As of January, the following titles standard length ongoing titles, previously priced at $3.99 for 32 pages/22 story pages, will be priced at $2.99 with 32 pages/20 story pages:

American Vampire;
Batman: The Dark Knight;
Batman Incorporated;
Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors;
JSA All-Stars.

As of January, the following licensed titles, previously priced at $3.99, will be priced at $2.99:

Gears of War;
God of War
Kane & Lynch;
Ratchet & Clank.

As of January, the following ongoing titles previously priced at $3.99 for 40 pages/30 story pages including co-features, will no longer include co-features and will be priced at $2.99 for 32 pages/ 20 story pages:

Action Comics;
Adventure Comics;
Batman: Streets of Gotham;
Detective Comics;
Doc Savage;
Justice League of America;
Legion of Super-Heroes;
The Spirit.

In January, five books are $3.99 for 40 pages/30 story pages:

Batman: Europa # 1
First Wave # 6
DCU: Legacies # 9
Weird Worlds # 1
World of Warcraft: Curse of the Worgen

The following oversized anniversary issue will be $4.99 for 48 pages/38 story pages:

Hellblazer # 275

“Fans of our co-features should stay tuned. Some of these characters will find a new platform,” said Dan DiDio. “Going forward, mini-series and special events may feature a different price point and page count to best allow writers and artists the flexibility of format and story pages they need to tell their stories best.”

ICv2 conferees happily go digital

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Above WormWorld by Daniel Lieske, a digital comic recommended by David Baxter.

Moving forward with digital was the theme of today’s ICv2 Comics and Digital conference, which kicked off New York Comic Con with an afternoon of panels and idea sharing. And for those who are moving, they are doing so with zeal and purpose. As opposed to previous such industry gatherings, where digital was timidly referring to in veiled terms, left the Gods of Tradition strike the heretics dead, almost all of today’s speakers are living in a world where digital is already a part of their revenue stream. It made for a lively day of engaged attendees.

This is despite the day kicking off with a rather downbeat white paper from Milton Griepp. The numbers were all down: sales overall are down 12% overall, with comics up a mere 1% while graphic novels are down 20%. The GN decline is partly due to the”Watchmen effect” — Griepp theorized hat if it weren’t for the block buster sales of the GN last spring, comics sales would have been significantly down in 2009 — but also due to the softness in the bookstore market.

“Comics shops are holding their own,” said Griepp, in answer to an audience question.

However on the digital side, Griepp said that sales are up to $6-8 million in the US, a 1000% increase of the $500,000-$1 million business for 2009, estimated in his last white paper.

But even that sanguine statistic paled before the next session where Masaaki Shimizu, General Manager of International Business Strategy Division at Bitway ran down the statistics on the Japanese digital comics industry: $600 million a year. That’s US dollars. We fact checked with Shimizu after the panel to make sure we heard that right. By comparison, the Japanese PRINT comics industry is ¥1 billion, he said. Some digital comics are downloaded 10,000 times a day, he said.

The other participants on the state of digital panel included Dario Di Zanni, Sr. Manager, Marketing and Business Development–New Media, Disney Publishing Worldwide, Michael Murphey of iVerse, Lindsey Levinson of Overdrive, David Steinberger of Comixology and Ron Richards of Graphic.ly. They were all pragmatic and upbeat, clearly all have growing businesses.

Asked about what is selling, surprisingly, several mentioned that material that skews younger is leading their sales. Call it a renegade theory, but getting comics for younger readers out where younger readers can get at them might just increase comics readerships.

Shimizu mentioned that most of the digital comics in Japan are sold on mobile platform, including enhanced phones — it’s mostly women. “When we started in 2003 we didn’t expect that our audience would be 60% women,” he said. “For mobile retail service, high teen females are the biggest audience. High 20s and low 30s are the top in sales.”
 
Murphey reported, “Our audience is skewing younger. We have a few that have skewed older that have done well, but the younger titles seem to be the ones that are being purchased the mos–parents are getting things for kids to read.”

While the Apple IOS platform is reported to have the most success, the Sony PSP is also a strong delivery device for comics — PSP buyers are a bit more adventurous, said Murphey.

Other points that came up throughout the day:

• Publishers — both print and digital — are beginning to chafe against Apple and its restrictions for what you can charge and content. Apple never meant to be both a tech manufacturer and a content provider, said Ted Adams of IDW later in the day.

• Comics have the music business as a skeleton along the highway….if they don’t get smarter about what is already happening they’ll end up in the same state

• As more platforms become available the market is going to grow exponentially.

• Publishers would be silly not to look into advertising opportunities for digital comics. .

• It was also pointed out that the dedicated comic shop audience is perhaps 300,000 people — the iVerse app alone has been downloaded 2.5 million times.

The next program was digital and creativity, which I moderated. It was a very lively session which could have gone on all day. All the participants are very dedicated to the digital platform, and truly, where digital and comics will end up is a wide open frontier of opportunity. Also clumsiness — the whole room groaned when Douglas Wolk bought up motion comics. Alex De Campi talked a lot about Valentine, and how the page format had given her a chance to write with different pacing. People rarely came out and mentioned downloads, but Robot Comics David Baxter mentioned that Robot 13 has now had 200,000 downloads, and a 5 or 6% conversion rate from the free sample to the paid issues and “The print edition is completely sold out.”

On the print vs digital panel, digital was winning handily. The retailer with pitchfork demographic was represented by John Riley, owner of Grasshopper Comics, but he was very funny and wry in admitting that the digital world is here to stay. What he pleaded for is a way to make digital comics sell more comics in ALL forms. One idea that came up again and again — bonus content, whether as with graphic.ly “audio tracks” of creator comments, or as Riley suggested, extra pages or features that are downloaded able in a retail environment. “We’re going up the digital ramp last. If I had a wifi hotspot where you download a few extra free pages, trust me while you’re there I’ll sell you something.”

The biggest bombshell came from Marvel’s David Gabriel (see next story.) He said that digital has yet to equal what Midtown of of the biggest comics retailers in the country, sold on titles available on digital platforms. However Ultimate Thor #1, which was sold day and date, was the first to sell more in digital that at Midtown. “In April we had zero download and now we had we passed 2 million downloads in five months that’s pretty fantastic – but that does not translate into 2 million downloads a day.”

The print vs digital was really no battle, just an acknowledgement that the business is changing. As folks gathered around for the traditional blue cocktails of the Transcontinental schmooze hour, the main topic was just how we were all going to fit into this brave new world.

NYCC 10: The Beat

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Where to find The Beat at New York Comic Con:

Today, we’re on this panel at the ICv2 Digital Conference at 3:

The Medium and the Message—Digital and Creativity
How will the digital medium affect how comics are created?

Friday 10/8, we’re on this professional hours panel:

The Evolution of Graphic Novel Publishing: What Publishers Need to Consider in Order to Grow the Market from Here
Date: Friday, October 8
Time: 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
Location: Room 1A14
Speaker: TBA
Track: NYCC/NYAF Professionals
Description: What are the challenges facing the next stage of growth for graphic novels?  The industry has seen phenomenal growth over the past ten years but the landscape is rapidly changing.  What does the market place really look like and what do the publishers need to consider in order to create cohesive direction for the development of the category.

We’re paneling with Jill Faherty (Baker & Taylor), Jim Killen (Barnes & Noble), Amanda Emmert (ComicsPro), Rich Johnson (Author/Consultant), and John Hogan (GraphicNovelReporter.com)

Moderator: John Shableski (Diamond Book Distributors)

We’ll be at the whole show, in and out at the Publishers Weekly booth #534, where on Sunday we’ll be hosting the Publishers Weekly/Beat Writing Open House from 1:30 to 2:30

PW Comics Week and The Beat are looking for writers — if you’re interested in doing some comics journalism for either or both, stop by to talk to me or Calvin. Be ready to pitch some ideas!

Other than that, we’ll just be wandering around, getting to know the people. Please don’t be shy — say hi.

The Beat 1 Minute Guide to NYCC

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Although it’s been a long, hard convention season, enthusiasm for the New York Comic-Con which kicks off tomorrow is running HIGH, especially among our European comics friends, who can’t afford San Diego prices any more, but find New York’s Fall Saver Fares just right. It’s hard to find a better time in New York than early October — crisp air, falling leaves, a certain “buzz” in the air….it’s a good time.

In case you are wondering what to do or where to go, we’ll direct you to the hard work that others have done.

For eating, CB Cebulski’s three part guide at Eataku is amazing.

Part One West side from burgers to Japanese tapas.
Part Two: burgers
Part Three: NYC classics

With picks from safe to adventurous there’s something to please every taste on this list. NO wonder the guy has been on the Food Network!

As for the show itself, we couldn’t have picked better than David Brothers’ The 15 Must-See Panels at New York Comic Con and Douglas Wolk’s New York Comic Con: What to Stand in Line For.

Unfortunately one marquis event has been changed — the expected Scott Kurtz/Ted Rall debate on digital vs print will not be Kurtz vs someone else, which will still be good, but given their epic online battles, still a bit of a disappointment. Kurtz tweeted about the change then wrote in a private email:

We emailed a month ago. He said yes. Approved the moderator and then today we emailed him instructions on getting his badge and he informs us he didn’t know we were serious and that he’s got to promote a book in Portland.


Soooooooo…not exactly a sudden era of good feeling.

That aside, it’s going to be a busy few days. Although the NYCC proper doesn’t kick off until tomorrow, we’ll be at the ICv2 digital comics conference all day, and we’ll have a full report later on.

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NYCC 10: Who's where — UPDATED

Mostly via Twitter, here’s a roundup of who’s where and signing when . NOTE: We’ll be updating this for the next day or so. New entries are marked with a *.

Creators

Rafael Albuquerque

* Tim Beedle

Brian Michael Bendis

* Ciff Chiang

Becky Cloonan

Matthew Cody

* Molly Crabapple

Fernando Dagnino and MIguel Sepulveda

Andy Diggle

Josh Fialkov

* Chandra Free

Lee Garbett

Brea Grant

Cully Hamner

Gabriel Hardman

Rebekah Isaacs

Robert Kirkman

Neil Kleid

Joe, Andy and Adam Kubert

Jeff Lemire

Marjorie Liiu

* Francis Manapul
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Larry Marder

Ron Marz
* Jim McCann
* Jamie McKelvie and Kieron Gillen

Patricia Mulvihill

* Paolo Rivera

James Robinson

Claudio Sanchez

Tim Seeley

Declan Shalvey

Raina Telgemeier

Andie Tong

* Jen Van Meter

Brian Wood

Companies

Aniplex

Tenacious Toys

DK Publishing

Study of Anime

Kid Robot

Abrams Comics Arts

Captain Action NYCC EXclusives

myplasticheart

The essential Captain Action

*InkBot.net
*Comic Book Hall of Fame
*Write Brothers, Inc
* Four Horsemen

Nice Art: Paolo Rivera's Batman

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While looking up New York Comic Con schedules, we found the above Batman commission by Paolo Rivera, who has worked almost exclusively for Marvel. But in the comments he notes he would love to draw Batman “some day”…hint hint hint.

NYCC 10: Lerner Graphic Universe #2307

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Lerner Graphic Universe line hasn’t got much industry attention but it’s putting out some fun books by talented creators for the younger set, Check out that they have to offer.

We’re pleased to announce that several of our authors and artists will be at New York Comic Con for signings, and we’ll be giving away some posters promoting our brand new series!

The Lerner booth at NY Comic Con is #2307. We are next to Archie Comics, across from NBM/Papercutz, and near a restroom. HarperCollins, Oni, and Tor are also in our aisle.

Friday
1pm ~ 7pm Posters and giveaways!
TBA Guinea Pig 1 & 2 signing with Stephanie Yue
TBA Yali Lin Manga Math signing

Saturday
10am ~ 4pm Posters and giveaways!
4pm ~ 5pm Yuko Ota signing of Manga Math
5pm ~ 7pm Yuko will sign Manga Math at her booth, called Johnny Wander

Sunday 
10am ~ 12pm Posters and giveaways!
12pm ~ 1pm Evonne Tsang and Alitha Martinez signing Twisted Journeys
1pm ~ 2pm Colleen A.F. Venable signing Guinea Pig
2pm ~ 3pm Tintin Pantoja and Yuko Ota singing Manga Math
3pm ~ 4pm Alaya Johnson singing Twisted Journeys
4pm ~ 5pm (not finalized) Evonne Tsang and Alitha Martinez signing Twisted Journeys

NYCC 10: Dark Horse #2023

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Dark Horse has a battalion of signings and creators and two exclusives: a limited edition Hawaiian Print Domo and a limited printing Xerxes Lithograph! Get ‘em while you can!

Can’t make it to all of these events, or to NYCC at all? Don’t worry! Dark Horse and St. Mark’s Comics are hosting a special event on Saturday night.

Friday, October 8th:

12:15pm-1:15pm: Art to Merchandise–How to Make More with your Art (Panel) Room 1A17

1pm-2pm
Becky Cloonan, Gabriel Ba, Fabio Moon (Pixu)

2pm-3pm
Jerry Robinson (Jet Scott)

3pm-4pm
Omar Francia, Mac Walters, Joe Quinones (Mass Effect: Redemption)

4pm-5pm
Frank Miller (Sin City, 300) 

5:30pm-6:30pm: Editors on Editing Comics (Panel) Room 1A22

5:45pm-6:45pm: Dark Horse Comics (Panel) Room 1A24

5pm-6pm
John Schnepp (Dethklok) 

Saturday, October 9th:

11am-12pm
Jim Shooter, Nate Piekos (Doctor Solar, Man of the Atom, Magnus, Robot Fighter)

12pm-1pm
Evan Dorkin (Beasts of Burden)

1pm-2pm
John Arcudi, Peter Snejbjerg (B.P.R.D., Abe Sapien)

2pm-3pm
Carla Speed McNeil (Finder)

3pm-4pm
Morgan Spurlock (Supersized)

4pm-5pm
Noah Wyle, Moon Bloodgood, Mark Verheiden , Andrew Dalhouse, Paul Tobin (Falling Skies)

5pm-6pm
Georges Jeanty (Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8)

6pm-7pm
Jan Duursema, Dave Ross, Mark McKenna, Joe Quinones (Star Wars: Legacy, Star Wars: The Old Republic)

7pm to 8pm: Techland’s Digital Age of Comics (Panel moderated by Douglas Wolk) Room 1A24

Sunday, October 10th:

10am-10:30am
Jason Little (Motel Art Improvement Service)

10:30am-11am
Mike Hawthorne (Conan)

11am-11:30am
Steve Morris (Serenity, The Occultist)

11:30am-12pm
Larry Marder (Bean World)

12pm-12:30 pm
Rick Leonardi (Aliens Vs. Predator)

12:30pm-1pm
Andy MacDonald (Terminator: 1984)

2:30pm-3pm
David Lloyd (Kickback)

2:30pm-3:30pm Dark Horse Video Games and Comics (Panel moderated by Blair Butler) Room 1A22

NYCC 10: Soulcraft Comics #457

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Inaki Miranda’s amazing work on TRIBES has gotten a lot of attention, and he’ll be at the show. details below.

The creators of the widescreen sci-fi epic TRIBES: The Dog Years, both writer Michael Geszel and all the way from Spain, artist Inaki Miranda, will be signing at the IDW Booth #2115 Saturday 10/9 from 3pm to 4pm.
They will be signing books all weekend and giving out FREE T-Shirts, at the SoulCraft Comics booth
SMALL PRESS SECTION
BOOTH #457

Read the first 30+ pages of TRIBES: The Dog Years free: http://tribesthecomic.com

NYCC 10: Top Shelf #

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Top Shelf has the usual gang of outstanding creators plus Japanese illustrator/manga-ka Akino Kondoh!</strong>

New York, here we come! This weekend (October 8-10) is the New York Comic Con, and Top Shelf Productions will be exhibiting in style. Don’t miss our first ever appearance with the world-renowed Akino Kondoh, contributor and cover artist for Ax: A Collection of Alternative Manga! Grab copies of the brand-new Dodgem Logic #5, the latest issue of Alan Moore’s wild underground magazine! Plus appearances by Top Shelf stars JD Arnold & Rich Koslowski (BB Wolf & the 3 LPs), Jeff Lemire (Essex County), and Robert Venditti (The Surrogates)! Come out and see us this weekend!

NYCC 10: Abrams Comics Arts

Abrams ComicArts, an imprint of ABRAMS, returns to New York Comic Con to showcase the 2010 line up of high-quality comics related titles.

Meet Jerry Robinson, creator of the Joker, signing copies of
Jerry Robinson: Ambassador of Comics at the Abrams ComicArts booth.

Meet Michael Uslan, Stan Goldberg and the rest of the Archie creators celebrating the
publication of Archie Marries. . . .

Meet Chip Kidd and Geoff Spear signing advance copies of
Shazam! The Golden Age of the World’s Mightiest Mortal.

Meet Rick Meyerowitz, one of the original members of the National Lampoon staff,
signing copies of the new Abrams book Drunk Stoned Brilliant Dead: The Writers and
Artists Who Made the National Lampoon Insanely Great.

Meet young adult author Laura Lee Gulledge signing copies of Page by Paige.

Get an early galley of Jason Shiga’s spring 2011 book Empire State.
Some highlights from this year’s list that will be featured at New York Comic Con
include Jerry Robinson: Ambassador of Comics by N. C. Christopher Couch; Shazam!
The Golden Age of the World’s Mightiest Mortal by Chip Kidd and Geoff Spear; Archie
Marries. . . by Michael Uslan, illustrated by Stan Goldberg and Bob Smith; The Night
Bookmobile by Audrey Niffenegger; The Art of Jaime Hernandez by Todd Hignite; The
Simpsons Futurama Crossover Crisis by Matt Groening; Art in Time by Dan Nadel;
Wacky Packages New New New; and The Horror! The Horror! by Jim Trombetta.

Authors and artists who will be present at New York Comic Con this year include:
Jerry Robinson (participating in a panel and signing at the Abrams ComicArts booth),
Michael Uslan, Stan Goldberg, Jack Morelli, Bob Smith, Glenn Whitmore, John
Goldwater and Victor Gorelick (participating in panels and signings), Chip Kidd
and Geoff Spear (signing at the ABRAMS booth), Rick Meyerowitz (author of Drunk
Stoned Brilliant Dead: The Writers and Artists Who Made the National Lampoon
Insanely Great, signing at the Abrams ComicArts booth. Authors and artists can be made
available for interviews in advance or at designated times at the show.

“We are thrilled to return to the New York Comic Con for the fifth year in a row,” says
Charles Kochman, editorial director of Abrams ComicArts. “Our eagerly anticipated fall
titles will make their debut alongside our award-winning list of backlist titles, and many
of our authors will be joining us to celebrate. I can’t imagine a better publication party
than to share our new art books and graphic novels with over 75,000 potential fans.”

NYCC 10: Indie Spinner Rack #425

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Podcast favorite Indie Spinner Rack (Booth #425) will have the Awesome Anthologies and more but also  a wide array of indie talent whom will  be signing, selling their books and sketches as well. PLUS the big Rock Comic-Con party on Saturday night.

ISR BOOTH SIGNINGS NYCC 2010

FRIDAY SCHEDULE

1:00 pm – 3pm
Charly La Greca – The Hair Pair(Disney)& The Awesome Anthologies
Hamza Pecenkovic – Murder Machine & The Skeptic
Alex Serra – Legion of Super-Heroes in the 31st Century, Teen Titans Go, Growing Up Enchanted, Toybox Turmoil and Sleeping Dragons.

4:00 – 5pm

Rebekah Isaacs – DV8, Hack/Slash & Magus(Upcoming)
Jon Price  – Magus (Upcoming)

5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Charles Soule – Strong Man  &  – 27(Upcoming)
Nick Runge –  Angel, Farscape, Ghostbusters, & WWII graphic novel called Cockatoo Newsgies (Upcoming)

SATURDAY SCHEDULE

10:00 – 12:00 pm
Miss Lasko Gross – Escape From Special
Henni – Hand Colored Mini(House of Twelve) 
Hamza Pecenkovic

12:00- 2pm
Jamie Tanner – The Aviary & Upcoming –  ‘Blackwell'(Upcoming)
MK Reed – Cross Country & Americus (Upcoming)

2:00- 3:00 pm
Rebekah Isaacs
Jon Price

3:00 – 5 pm
Charly La Greca
Alex Serra
    
5:00 – 7:00 pm
Rich Miller – The Awesome Anthologies &  DC Comics
Charles Soule

SUNDAY SCHEDULE
10:00 – 1:00 pm
MK Reed
Charly La Greca

1:00 –
5:00 pm
Nathan Schrieber – Xeric Winner – ‘Power Out’
Jamie Tanner

5:00
TBD
Rich Miller

NYCC 10: Ben 10 on 10-10-10

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We haven’t been covering a lot of the media stuff at New York Comic Con but we’ll make an exception for Ben 10 because a) it was created by the underrated gang at Man of Action and b) it is doing a cool 10-10-10 promotion, and what better way to celebrate this special day?

Cartoon Network celebrates a landmark day for its iconic global franchise, Ben 10, online, on-air, with the fans and at stores with a special multi-platform promotion culminating on October 10, 2010, otherwise known as 10-10-10! Ben 10 has been one of Cartoon Network’s most successful original series since first premiering on the network in January 2006. The franchise has since spawned three animated series, one animated movie, two live-action movies, a widely-popular consumer products line and has captured the imaginations of viewers on a global scale.

On Sunday, 10-10-10, Cartoon Network will present a Ben 10: “Ultimate” Marathon from 3:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. (ET, PT) leading up to an hour-long special premiere of two Ben 10: Ultimate Alien episodes from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. (ET, PT). Fans can get in on the action by entering to win the Ben 10 Ultimate Prize Pack by submitting codes that will appear in the bottom corner of the screen during the marathon to www.Ben10UltimatePrizePack.com from 3:00 p. m. – 11:59 p. m (ET, PT). The Grand Prize Winner will receive a cash prize, a framed leather Ben 10 jacket and a Ben 10 Prize Pack! Secondary prize winners will also be eligible for Ben 10 action figures, DVDs, video games and many other prizes. Results will be on-air and online.

Leading up to the special Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 10-10-10 event, starting on Monday, October 4, new robot versions of Ben 10: Ultimate Alien characters will be released each day online, including Rath, Armadrillo, Ultimate Echo Echo and Ultimate Big Chill. Also for the first time, Ultimate Humungousaur will be unlocked for fans to play! Cartoon Network TKO: Titanic Kungfubot Offensive, is a free real-time multiplayer game that lets fans challenge other players online with head-to-head fighting action using giant robot versions of favorite characters from shows such as Ben 10, Adventure Time and Generator Rex. Available to play now at http://www.cartoonnetwork.com/TKO.  

During New York Comic Con (NYCC), the largest pop culture event on the east coast from October 8 – 10, Cartoon Network and Ben 10 fans will unite to celebrate 10-10-10.  Cartoon Network and Ben 10: Ultimate Alien will take over the registration lobby of the Jacob Javitz Center with the CARTOON NETWORK ULTIMATE ACTION LOUNGE, which will feature plasma televisions with Cartoon Network content, free giveaways, video games from D3Publisher (Ben 10 Ultimate Alien: Cosmic Destruction), photo-ops for fans and digital sampling stations. Then on Sunday, 10-10­-10, NYCC attendees can celebrate Ben 10 day with the cast of Ben 10: Ultimate Alien. Fans will be treated to a never-before-seen episode of the series with voiceover dialogue performed LIVE by Yuri Lowenthal (Ben), Greg Cipes (Kevin) and Ashley Johnson (Gwen). Other panel highlights include a sneak peak at the new season of Ben 10: Ultimate Alien, cast Q&A, and a chance to win lots of Ben 10 Prizes!

As the long-standing master toy partner for the Ben 10 franchise, Bandai America is also getting in on the 10-10-10 action as it will rev up to the holiday season with its “Ben 10: Ultimate Alien Go-Kart Sweepstakes.” Beginning on 10-10-10 and continuing for 10 weeks leading into this year’s holiday season, consumers can enter for a chance to win an exclusive Ben 10 Mark 10-style go-kart, among other cool weekly prizes inspired by Cartoon Network’s top-rated, Emmy Award®-winning animated series, by visiting www.bandai.com/uasweepstakes.  The limited edition go-kart will make its public premiere at New York Comic Con, where attendees can have a commemorative photo taken with the vehicle, and receive Ultimate Alien mini-posters (while supplies last), on Comic Con “Kids’ Day,” Sunday, October 10.

Ben 10: Ultimate Alien is the latest animated series in the Ben 10 saga and premiered on Cartoon Network in April 2010. Ben 10: Ultimate Alien follows 16-year-old Ben Tennyson as his secret identity has been revealed to the world and he is now an international mega-star super hero, loved by kids the world over but distrusted by many adults.  Armed with a mysterious new Omnitrix, Ben is able to transform into hyper-evolved versions of his aliens and will see action in places he’s never been. 

Cartoon Network (CartoonNetwork.com), currently seen in more than 97 million U.S. homes and 166 countries around the world, is Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.’s ad-supported cable service now available in HD offering the best in original, acquired and classic entertainment for youth and families.  Nightly from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. (ET, PT), Cartoon Network shares its channel space with Adult Swim, a late-night destination showcasing original and acquired animation for young adults 18-34.