Via Heidi MacDonald at Publishers Weekly
The winds of change once again blew over the comics industry last week as Warner Bros. announced a major restructuring and executive changes at DC Comics. The home of Superman and Batman will become part of a larger division called DC Entertainment, to be run by WB branding veteran Diane Nelson. The new arm is charged with expanding opportunities for DC’s huge library of characters into other media, including feature films, television, interactive entertainment, direct-to-consumer platforms and consumer products.
While the moves have been in the works for some time, the timing for some parts of the announcement was moved up following the previous week’s blockbuster announcement —Disney buying Marvel Comics. The anticipated Disney/Marvel powerhouse is expected to place Marvel’s boy and teen friendly superheroes into Disney’s vast licensing, publishing and theme park operations. While Marvel and DC have been four-color comics publishing rivals since the early 1960s, the stakes have intensified in recent years as superhero-based movies have flexed their superpowers at the box office. Warner/DC’s The Dark Knight is the all time #2 money winner, but the recent Superman reboot stumbled, and a Wonder Woman movie has been in the concept stages for years. Meanwhile, Marvel successfully launched the little known Iron Man into a top franchise, and Spider-Man has three blockbusters in his web.
Now it’s Warners’ turn to start mining the DC library of properties and characters, with Nelson in a position to help the entire studio develop DC’s properties across various platforms. Indeed, things are looking up for DC’s stable, as they have been promoting their characters in original animated movies, including the recent Green Lantern: First Flight and the ongoing animated Batman: The Brave and the Bold, which airs on Cartoon Network. Movies in the pipeline include Ryan Reynolds as Green Lantern; a Human Target TV show; and there ae movies in production based on Jonah Hex and The Losers.
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I’m not a big comic book reader, so my feelings about this come from a movie viewer stand point. So I think it should be interesting to see what comes up. I really like superhero movies, so I’ll be glad to see more.
How do you feel about the changes this week? Do you think this will have a positive or negative effect on the comic books?