At last night’s presentations at the Diamond Retailer summit, some hints were dropped of bigger projects to be announced more fully during C2E2 panels. Here’s a bit of a roundup. We tried to snap some pictures of the slides, but they are awfully blurry…As Gilly might say: “Sorry!”
• In Diamond news: the comics distribution giant is considering a new discount schedule based on total orders as opposed to initial orders — this is esoteric to the fan on the street but the assembled retailers applauded loudly. Also, the reorder penalty is being reconsidered — currently retailers pay a 3% penalty on reorders for non-front-of-the-book publishers, which considering the ascendancy of items with shelf life these days, is a bit too steep.
• Diamond also polled retailers on whether they wanted Tuesday street dates – in line with books, videos and music — as opposed to Wednesday. This would also entail all stores getting their books on Monday instead of some Tuesday and some Wednesday. To enable the plan, Diamond would institute a $5 surcharge from retailers in order to impanel a “Street Date Team” that would go around and check on stores that might break street dates. (Only one store broke the Blackest Night #6 street date, an encouraging statistic.) Retailers would also have a shorter window on FOC and other niggly business details.
The retailers in the room favored Tuesday about 60-40, but frankly, our thought is, why compete with books and DVDs? Comics are the Wednesday crowd! We’ll have a fuller discussion of this later on, including a history lesson on when Tuesday AND Friday were new comics days.
Additionally, DC’s Bob Wayne said that DC was working with Warner Home Entertainment to get comics-related DVDs release day and date in comics shops.
• Speaking of embargoes, our details on this are a bit sketchy, but there was apparently some blowback over the leaking of Marvel’s press preview PDF program. (A few, elite news outlets are given previews of upcoming news.) Someone leaked details of O.M.I.T to Bleeding Cool and Marvel announced the program was ended.
• Marvel announced a big vampire event for later this year. Apparently this upset Mark Millar because he is also working on a vampire storyline for Marvel. Which would lead you to believe that editors at Marvel don’t talk to one another, which we find HIGHLY unlikely, but it’s Mark Millar’s world. We just live in it.
• Marvel also announced some Red Hulk and Fantastic Three stories. Also, Ed Brubaker and Dale Eaglesham will team up on a book about Steve Rogers. Marvel presenter Arune Singh mentioned major changes for the X-Men, something we’ve never heard in our life before.
• Proving that vampires are the new zombies, Dark Horse announced a team-up with Hammer Films, beginning with an adaptation of the remake of the Swedish film LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, called LET ME IN:
Dark Horse has hired Marc Andreyko to pen the spinoff comic, whose storyline is being kept under wraps but “will incorporate some of the film’s characters and mythology with some fresh themes,” according to the companies.
The new movie, to be released in October by Overture, centers on a bullied 12-year old who strikes a bond with a new neighbor, a young girl who emerges only at night and seems immune to the winter elements.
• DC teased a few projects, including the 100th issue of FABLES, which would include this lovely board game fold-out.
• There will be an X-Files-30 Days of Night crossover.
• The Paul Dini/Alex Ross collaborations are being released in a collected edition at standard trim size.
• ALL-STAR SUPERMAN by Morrison and Quitely will be collected in a big fat edition.
• Peter Straub and soap opera star Michael Easton will collaborate with John Bolton on a graphic novel called THE GREEN MAN.
• After decades in production, the Marv Wolfman/George Perez Teen Titans graphic novel is completed and will be out in November.
• Wayne also announced a complicated program for Blackest Night hardcovers that would essentially allow retailers to order now and pay later. Eight collections will be released over a four week period, so it will be a large investment for retailers and consumers.
• IDW announced a new Dungeons and Dragons book.
• Avatar announced a new book based on Garth Ennis’s Crossed universe by David Lapham and a movie deal for the book, with producer Ken Levin putting together an indie financing deal via Michael De Luca, Jason Netter and Kevin Spacey’s Trigger Street Prods, with Ennis penning the script. The post-apocalyptic splatter-comedy was drawn by Jacen Burrows.
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.