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Loeb and Marvel TV


Jeph Loeb went on a media tour last week, talking to a bunch of websites about his new position running Marvel Television. Variations on a theme in most interviews, but piecing together a few bits of info, it’s clear how this is aimed at boosting Disney’s TV presence, as he told Splash Page:

JEPH LOEB: Well, Marvel took a look at the success they’ve had in being able to do the feature film division and really remain true to the core characters and the fanbase, and once the buyout with Disney happened, it became obvious that, given that Disney also owns networks, it was only a matter of time before we all got into the television business together. So, under the guidance of Alan Fine and Dan Buckley, they asked whether or not I wanted to take the experiences I’ve had working in television both in live-action and animation, and bring them over a run a television division.

Loeb also explained why he’s still in the publishing division:

LOEB: I think each division feeds up through Marvel Entertainment. Marvel Television is a new division that’s been formed to handle live-action animation and direct-to-DVD animation…. [snip] Our primary goal right now is, given that Disney has so many outlets — the immediate ones being the Disney Channel, Disney XD, ABC, and ABC Family — that’s a pretty great place to start.

At Techland, he offered oblique hunts at future television content:

Will you be working with characters who’ve already appeared in movies, or looking for characters who haven’t been introduced to wider audiences? Has there been any discussion of that yet?

I can’t talk specifically about what’s being developed because it’s just too soon. But we are looking at everything that’s available to us, in conjunction with ABC and ABC Family, in terms of what’s best for their needs and what we can produce and make look great.

Or, as he told Newsarama

There are some projects in animation that we’re not ready to talk about, but we’re going to be developing and expanding into that arena. Our hope is to bring Marvel Animation up to the quality and notoriety of the publishing and movie division. We’re now part of the legacy of Disney, where animation is king, and it’s our responsibility to up our game and create something that sets Marvel Animation apart from everything else that’s out there. At least that’s our challenge and our hope. And then there’s a brand new division that we’ll do with live action, where we’re working in partnership with ABC and ABC Family to find the right properties, the right characters and develop them. To start, we will be exploring the one-hour drama field similar to the shows that I mentioned that I’ve worked on, like Smallvillle and Lost.

It’s been noted that ABC already has a superhero TV show coming on this fall, the Incredibles-like No Ordinary Family starring Michael Chiklis.

  1. Live action, huh?
    So I’m guessing it’s stuff aimed at the 12-18 year olds. Given that talent pool and what I’ve seen on the Disney Channel, Disney XD, ABC, and ABC Family -something like Miley Cyrus as Kitty Pryde can be expected more than something like Dr Strange.

    Animation= more anime-like animation. There are already Anime trailers for Marvel content floating around. There’s no alternative. It seems like everyone who’s doing 2-d animation currently, is taking cues from Japanese animation. By cues, I mean heavy influence because that’s what’s sells. It’s not like twelve years ago where Asian animators drew in non-anime styles. Call me jaded, but I doubt he’ll be doing anything that “sets Marvel apart” in the animation department.

    Saying Warner Brothers is king and then backing it up by referencing a cartoon that’s 18 years old doesn’t mean anything. Nothing as of late has liven up to Batman Animated. Warner Brothers has been backing away from that look and having been embracing cheaper animation techniques that are currently being ulitized by the Cartoon Network at worst and Anime at best.

    It’s very good that Loeb has identified the subpar quality of Marvel’s recent animation. What he does about it is key.

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