§ Everyone is home safe and sound from the DC editorial retreat. Amazingly no one wandered off into the woods and didn’t come back.
§This well-done “Sim City” video is a reminder that a new Sin City movie is underway, so this kind of stylized parody will soon be back in our consciousness.
§ If you are not sick of all the endless lawsuits surrounding Stan Lee Media, you’ll be interested in this story about how a hedge fund manager is funding SLM’s lawsuit against Disney claiming ownership of Stan’s Marvel characters:
“We are in the right here,” says Wolk in an interview. “No court has ever addressed or ever decided who is the owner of the characters—all of the prior litigation got dismissed for reasons that have nothing to do with who owns the characters.” Wolk is not a shareholder of Stan Lee Media, which spent the years 2001 to 2006 in bankruptcy court, nor is he a lawyer in the case. Rather Wolk is an investor who has organized a small group to financially back Stan Lee Media’s legal claims that it owns these iconic characters. Wolk says his primary investor is one of the nation’s biggest hedge funds, billionaire Paul Singer’s Elliott Management. “Elliott Capital hedge fund has been providing financial support to help [Stan Lee Media] since 2011,” says Wolk
§ Speaking of Marvel, next month’s GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY relaunch will include TRADING CARDS. Will everyone want Rocket Raccoon?
§ More old Marvel: The Human Fly is being redeveloped as a movie by Alan Brewer and Steven Goldmann. And LA-based cartoonist Michael Aushenker is putting together a new graphic novel based on the character, which will be out at San Diego.
Cartoonist Michael Aushenker (“El Gato, Crime Mangler,” “Bart Simpson”) will edit the trade paperback anthology, which will include collaborations by Aushenker and his “Gumby’s Gang Starring Pokey” artist, Rafael Navarro (“Sonambulo”); “The Human Fly” screenwriter Babinski and Javier Hernandez (“El Muerto, Aztec Zombie”); and writer/producer Steve Kriozere (creator of Cinemax’s TV series “Femme Fatale”) with artist Jason Baroody (“Combat Jacks”); and “Trailer Park of Terror” creators Christopher March and James Dracoules.
Original “Human Fly” cover artists and inkers contributing pinups will include Bob Layton, Al Milgrom, Don Perlin and Steve Leialoha, as will longtime “Unknown Soldier” and “Incredible Hulk” artist Gerry Talaoc, Steve Butler (“Web of Spider-Man”), John Heebink (“Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.”), current Marvel alum Nelson Faro DeCastro (“Iron Man,” “X-Men,” “The Thing”), and alternative comics star Jim Rugg (“Afrodisiac”). Iconic letterer Janice Chiang (“Alpha Flight,” “Iron Man”) will contribute some lettering. Layton will provide the cover art.
§ Want to take a tour that involves a comicon? Call Geek Nation Tours.
§ Media news: animation historian Jerry Beck has left Cartoon Brew, which will continue under former partner Amid Amidi. Beck will be blogging back at his old digs. cartoonresearch
§ KC Carlson interviews comics historian John Wells
John Wells has been a “mystery man” in comics for more than two decades, working behind the scenes organizing and indexing the histories of comics’ four-color mystery men (as well as their friends and foes). You may have seen some of his public work in the pages of The Comics Buyer’s Guide, Amazing Heroes, Back Issue, Alter Ego, and many other places. Those of you who read indicias have also seen his name in dozens of books about comics, mostly for DC Comics, including the Superman and Wonder Woman Encyclopedias (he co-wrote the latter), the DC Vault and Batman Vault books, and most recently 75 Years of DC Comics: The Art of Modern Mythmaking and its spin-off volume The Golden Age of DC Comics. He has contributed extensive research on identifying writers, artists, and dates for thousands of pieces of artwork. Plus, as you’ll learn later, he also provides research and background material for many comic creators! In many ways, John Wells is one of comics’ biggest secret weapons.
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.