Archaia is making some moves, both with a new distributor — PGW — and its first illustrated novel, Conspiracy of the Planet of the Apes.
Buried in a PR on the Ape book is the news that Archaia is leaving Diamond for PGW, which already distributes Cartoon Books. PGW distributes over 100 independent publishers, so picking up a few GN publishers makes sense. And Archaia’s new books-only plan is also a good bit for a books-only distributor.
As for the APES book, it’s a new retelling of untold tales of what went on in the original film, and features art by a bevy of stars, and a cover by Jim Steranko–SCORE. Already remade in 2001, a NEW PLANET OF THE APES film is due this year starring James Franco, Frieda Pinto, and Tom Felton.
Written by celebrated author, artist, and digital producer Andrew E.C. Gaska, and adapted from a story by Gaska, Rich Handley, Christian Berntsen and Erik Matthews, Conspiracy of the Planet of the Apes recounts what happened between the scenes of the classic 1968 Twentieth Century Fox film, centering on the astronaut John Landon, Chimpanzee scientists Dr. Milo and Dr. Galen, and Gorilla Security Chief Marcus. The book contains 30 full-color paintings and another 19 black and white illustrations, including a cover by legendary artist Jim Steranko (Raiders of the Lost Ark, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Nick Fury: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.) and interior art from some of the top talent in the industry, including renowned book cover painter Ken Kelly (Conan, KISS), Joe Jusko (Savage Sword of Conan, Tarzan), Sanjulian (Eerie, Vampirella), Mark Texiera (Ghost Rider, Wolverine), Leo Leibelman (Heavy Metal), Matt Busch (Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica), Brian Rood (Indiana Jones, Star Wars), Tom Scioli (Godland), David Hueso (G.I. Joe: Storm Shadow) and newcomers Dan Dussault (Critical Millennium) and Dirk Shearer (Mice Templar).
Conspiracy of the Planet of the Apes marks an expansion of Archaia’s successful collaboration with Gaska, following up on his science fiction comic epic, Critical Millennium: The Dark Frontier, which has received early critical acclaim.
“It means a lot to have this project be set for release and we cannot think of a better partner to have than Archaia with their outstanding production value,” said Gaska. “It’s been a great working partnership with 20th Century Fox and an honor to contribute to this legendary franchise.”
Conspiracy of the Planet of the Apes also marks Archaia’s first venture into prose books.
“We’re very excited about our first foray into prose fiction publishing, particularly being able to work with a brilliant creative talent in Drew Gaska and a storied franchise like Planet of the Apes. I’m a huge fan of the original film and Conspiracy is a great example of an author playing successfully in an established narrative canon. We are very excited to introduce this extraordinary science fiction release across the book trade and genre markets and look forward to Conspiracy emerging as one of the year’s most talked-about titles,” said Mark Smylie, CCO of Archaia.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.