Papercutz has created a new position of Marketing Director and filled it with Janna Morishima, formerly of Scholastic and Diamond Comics.
Ms. Morishima started in publishing with Scholastic and was a founding editor of its 'Graphix' line of graphic novels, where she helped bring Jeff Smith's BONE to color to a much wider audience as well as launching Raina Telgemeier's successful graphic novel adaptation of the BABYSITTERS CLUB series by Ann Martin. She then went on to become Director of Diamond Kids at Diamond Book Distributors, in charge of its general trade distribution clients' growing kids' lines, which included helping Francoise Mouly to launch her pioneering 'Toon Books' line for very young children. She pushed for and helped to implement brand new children's graphic novel sections in chain stores and elsewhere.
“We’re very excited to welcome Janna to our team as Papercutz experiences explosive growth with such licenses as the Smurfs and now Ninjago which has debuted with a 200,000 copy print run,” said Publisher Terry Nantier. “I’ve known her for a few years already and with her combined experience of editing and marketing children’s graphic novels and this, from the very start of this category’s introduction and growth, she will bring an added dimension of knowledge and energy. Anybody who knows her can see what a dynamo she is! She will bring boundless enthusiasm to our line and aggressive goals.”
"I love how graphic novels attract such a wide range of readers, from diehard bookworms to the most reluctant readers,” Janna Morishima said, “so when Papercutz offered me the opportunity to help spread the word about their fun and burgeoning line of children's graphic novels, I was happy to accept."
As we move out of November and NaNoWriMo comes to a close, we are about to dive into out next Secret Identity project--the Winter Book Club. This winter, we'll be reading an amazing Star Wars book that picks up where Return of the Jedi left off. It's called Star Wars: Heir to the Empire, and it's written by Timothy Zahn, who has become a legend in the Star Wars universe. If you've never read this book, you are in for a real treat.
We'll likely get started the week of December 14th, and the project should go for a few months. If you don't already have the book, we'd suggest picking up the 20th Anniversary Edition, as it's annotated and has some cool extras. You can get it on Amazon for less than $20.
Community member Wayne will be helping us out with this project, as he is a die hard Star Wars fan and very familiar with the book. We'll be recording a handful of segments throughout the project, and also discussing it on the regular podcast.
So go get your copy and get ready to continue the Star Wars saga!
Getting dragged to a Leonardo DiCaprio movie isn't anything new in my house, but I think old Leo may have given the best performance of his career in the new movie ‘J. Edgar’!
The film is a bio pick about one of the most controversial figures in American history, J. Edgar Hoover! Hoover was for over 50 years the head of the FBI and became one of the most powerful men in the country. Even presidents were fearful of him because of the way he would gather information on them to use it against them.
Directed by Clint Eastwood, ‘J. Edgar’ is a look at the life, times and death of the man. The main story is told cleverly as he tells his own embellished tale to a series of ghost writers who are putting together his autobiography. Here we see how the public perception and reality were not on the same page.
Leonardo DiCaprio is brilliant as Hoover, young and old! He plays a man with so many demons brilliantly. There are moments that you even start to justify his methods thanks to DiCaprio’s performance! There should be at least an Oscar nomination here for Leo.
Josh Hamilton played Hoover’s lifelong companion Robert Irwin so convincingly and commanded most of the scenes he was in. Naomi Watts was a great cast as one of the most important women in his live, Helen Gandy. But the biggest scene stealer was Judi Dench who played Hoover’s mother. Dench showed where the majority of her sons drive, neurosis and perfectionism came from.
As you see in the film Hoover did so much to help the nation (forensics lab, law enforcement using guns, impeccable record keeping to name a few), but his complete lack of respect for the presidents he served under (of any party) and tried to destroy people like Dr. Martin Luther King and a first lady or two.
The only problem I had was the constant jumping around that Eastwood used to tell the story from different times. It became distracting at times and hard to follow, but everything else he did was top notch.
A few things I should point out that really made this film brilliant! DiCaprio was able to go from good looking guy to clumpy, large, awkward man and still turn in a stirring performance. I like how there was an equal mix of good and bad. Considering this guy wasn’t a good human being, he loved his country and for the most part thought he was doing right! And despite his personal life (possibly homosexual, rumored cross dresser and suspected drug addict), these were not sensationalized to make the film more exciting. They were there to help paint the picture of a troubled man.
If you’re looking for action, don’t see this one. It is definitely a very slow paced film, but this is what I expected and liked about it.
Matman (and Mrs. Matman) Rating – 4.5 out of 5 Secrets
by Brian LeTendre
I decided to write a horror novel for NaNoWriMo this year, and over the past few weeks I’ve been watching a lot of horror movies for inspiration. One of the best I’ve seen is the 1964 gem Masque of the Red Death, directed by Roger Corman and starring the legendary Vincent Price. It’s a brilliant film that may be the best Corman has ever directed.
Based on an Edgar Allan Poe short story, Masque of the Red Death is set in medieval Euorpe. Vincent Price plays a tyrannical noble named Prospero who also happens to be a satan worshipper and all around bad guy. When Prospero finds out that a plague called the Red Death has afflicted a local village, he burns the village to the ground and then invites a group of his fellow nobles to seek refuge from the plage in his castle. Prospero believes that his pact with the devil will protect him and his friends from the Red Death, believing the plague to be of his master’s creation. As he finds out however, death is not goverened by the powers of Heaven and Hell.
This movie is great on a lot of levels. The cinematography, set dressing, costumes and use of color all contribute to an amazing looking film. Price is fantastic as the arrogant noble, and Jane Asher is great as a peasant girl Prospero kidnaps and tries to convert to the dark side. The scares are few and far between, but the movie is very atmospheric, and there is a general sense of foreboding throughout.
I can’t recommend this movie highly enough if you are a fan of Poe, Price or Corman. It’s a standout.
4.5 out of 5 Plagues
The current Star Trek series from IDW is incredible. Based on the events of the latest movie series, writer Mike Johnson and artist Joe Corroney have made a comic to die for…literally!
Star Trek # 5 will not only feature a cool cover by Tim Bradstreet, but will also have a second cover that is just too cool for words! But you need 300 words or less…
If you think you have the best comic retailer around would you defend them to the death? If you are picked, than you along with said retailer will appear on the second cover for Star Trek # 5. But what is real unique to this is that you will be drawn wearing a ‘red shirt’ getting shot protecting your store owner wearing a gold officers uniform like Captain Kirk.
So email your entry to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line ‘Saving My Retailer’! And then in 300 words or less describe why your retailer is the best and why you would take a phase set to kill to protect them.
Entries must be into IDW by Friday December 9th.
You still have one week left to register for this year's AnonyCon! Happening at the Sheraton Stamford in Stamford, CT December 2-4, AnonyCon is a weekend packed end to end with gaming. Pen and paper roleplaying games, live-action roleplaying games, video games, board games, card games--ALL GAMES!
Master of Ceremonies Max Saltonstall and his staff have filled this year's schedule with some fantastic events. Multiple editions of Dungeons & Dragons will be represented, featuring everything from Living Forgotten Realms to the new Lair Assault series. Pathfinder, Mistborn, Gamma World, Call of Cthulhu and several indie rpgs are alse being played throughout the weekend, and the board game and video game libraries are open to everythone all weekend long as well.
$50 gets you a weekend pass for all the festivities, and you can get all the registration details over at www.anonycon.com right now!
Dark Horse Comics is joining in on the Black Friday madness with a very exclusive limited offer to their digital comics readers.
On Black Friday, for 24 hours only - Dark Horse Digital will offer 134 single-issue Star Wars comics for $100! A savings of over $166!
This sale will begin at midnight (PST), November 25th!
Dark Horse Digital is available through all modern web browsers and as an app in the iTunes Store. Stop by https://digital.darkhorse.com and get all the Star Wars comics you could want and more!
There are few who truly deserve the title of the king! Jack Kirby was one of them. Born Jacob Kurtzberg in 1917, Bluewater Comics is now celebrating his life with their latest bio-comic “Orbit: Jack Kirby.”
This new bio comic will highlight how an artist helped change the face of comic books. For almost three decades, characters were trapped within each panel, but Kirby's cinematic style broke the boundaries of the sequential boxes, as he would use the whole page as his canvas. This style of graphic story telling would turn a fledgling comic book company into one of the most powerful companies in the world.
“When we published ‘Orbit: Stan Lee’ we understood it was only half the story,” said Darren Davis, president of Bluewater Comics. “We knew we needed to share Jack Kirby’s story. Every comic book fan owes Kirby a debt of gratitude. He helped lay the foundations of the Silver Age of Comic Books.”
"Orbit: Jack Kirby,” which is due out in Jan. 2012, is written by John Judy and features the art and cover art of Paul Cox. The comic book is only available thru comic book stores. Make sure to pre-order your copy.
“What was it like trying to bring to life the man in a comic book who helped reinvent comics? In a word, daunting,” said Judy. “I was really concerned that the word balloons for each character only contained exact quotes. I wasn't going to go literally putting words in anyone's mouth.”
Judy researched Kirby’s life intensely because his goal was to create a “more broad, almost impressionistic, but still accurate portrait, rather than a dry, encyclopedic account of his life, and I'm glad I could pull off at least that much.”
Cox said he faced a different challenge as a comic book artist in bringing thisbio-comic to life. “Going into this project, the last thing I wanted was to draw like Kirby did,” said Cox. “I certainly was inspired from his drawing style, and I hope it's evident in this book. From what I've read and heard,Kirby never wanted to back down from a fight, yet he was the kindest gentleman anyone had ever met.”
Cox said his goal was to “was to bring to life Kirby's great personality through his actions and expressions.”
The “Orbit” series was launched earlier in 2010 that serves a pop culture companion to Bluewater Comics successful “Female Force,” “Political Power” and “Fame” series. The bio-comic allows Bluewater to delve into the history of certainnewsworthy entertainers and explains how a person has achieved the level ofoffice in the government.
Upcoming biography comic subjects are Jon Stewart, John Lennon and JRR Tolkien.
Talk about a superhero team-up! Our good friend and G-Man creator Chris Giarrusso has joined forces with webcomic legend Brad Guigar (Evil Inc., How to Make Webcomics) to create an original webcomic for Emerald City Comicon. Called Tales from the Con, the strip is written by Guigar and drawn by Chris Giarrussso.
The first installement of the the comic is live now, and you can see it over at the Emerald City Comicon site here.