Bill Jemas is best known as the former publisher of Marvel Comics. His new
IP farm comics company is named Artists, Writers, & Artisans, Inc. and it gets worse from there. James Murdoch, son of Rupert Murdoch, Executive Co-Chairman of Fox Corporation and literal supervillain, who earned $2.2 billion from the Disney acquisition of Fox, has invested $5 million in Jemas’ company.
Murdoch is banking on AWA being the next Marvel or DC Comics, claiming:
“The value of storytelling is only going up, and AWA is uniquely positioned to create a tremendous platform for writers and artists.”
The way Murdoch talks it sounds like AWA is a great place for writers and artists. So much so that if a movie deal is struck, they’ll get 80% of the revenue. Oh wait. AWA gets 80% of the revenue, according to The Wall Street Journal.
AWA plans to distinguish itself from comic-book rivals like AT&T ’s DC Comics and Disney’s Marvel Comics by guaranteeing creators a percentage of the licensing deals it strikes, said Mr. Jemas, the company’s chief executive. When a movie studio options a character or story from AWA’s shared universe of characters, 20% of the revenue from that deal will be paid out to all the artists and writers who helped create those characters, Mr. Jemas said.
While AWA hasn’t produced any comics yet, they’ve already enlisted creators including J. Michael Straczynski, Garth Ennis, Reginald Hudlin, Frank Cho, and Peter Milligan, who are all banking on the success of a shared superhero universe, ala DC and Marvel, but without 75 years of history. Something Valiant Comics did when it was bought by DMG Entertainment in 2015, but has yet to release a single movie.
And if that isn’t weird enough, check out this job posting from Linkedin where AWA is searching for journalists to research incarceration in prisons and healthcare centers. The lucky journalist will tell the story of actual people, which will then be recast with fantasy characters, presumably drawn in sexy poses by Frank Cho.
We’re looking forward to AWA’s first release Conan The Incarcerated, which tells the story of a warrior barbarian who was imprisoned 25 years for marijuana possession. And the one-shot titled The Power Of Money, about paying a fine after defrauding thousands of families on home loans.
Conan The Incarcerated, which tells the story of a warrior barbarian who was imprisoned 25 years for marijuana possession. And [comic title], a one shot about paying a fine for defrauding thousands of families on home loans.