Hawkeye, Vol. 1, by Matt Fraction, David Aja and Javier Pulido, and Saga, Vol. 1, by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples, are among the 35 official selections for the 41st annual Angoulême International Comics Festival, to be held Jan. 30-Feb. 2.
Other titles familiar to North American audiences include: Annie Sullivan and the Trials of Helen Keller, by Joseph Lambert; Attack on Titan, Vol. 1, by Hajime Isayama; Are You My Mother?, by Alison Bechdel; Goliath, by Tom Gauld; My Friend Dahmer, by Derf; and The Property, by Rudu Modan.
In addition, the French-language editions of Paul Pope’s Battling Boy and Ben Hatke’s Zita the Spacegirl are among the nominees for the Sélection Jeunesse (books for young readers), while the eighth volume of Scalped, by Jason Aaron, R.M. Guera, Jason Latour, David Furno, received a nod for Prix Polar (crime). The reprints category also has several books readers should recognize.
The full list can be found on the Angoulême website.
Publishing | As part of its coverage of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Variety spotlights DC Entertainment’s digital moves, particularly its “Digital First” initiative, with titles like Smallville, Arrow and Batman: Arkham Unhinged, and the increase in sales since the company began going day-and-date with its comic books in September 2011. “What we launched last year as an experiment, we’ll increase the frequency now because it’s gotten so popular,” Hank Kanalz, senior vice president of Vertigo and Integrated Publishing, says of Digital First. [Variety]
Retailing | Halifax, Nova Scotia, comics retailer Calum Johnston is looking for a new location for Strange Adventures, as the current location is being redeveloped and the rent will go up as a result. Johnston would rather pay for more staff than pay a higher rent: “When people come in looking for a major title like the death of Peter Parker in Marvel Comics’ The Amazing Spider-Man, they inevitably have questions about other titles. It is important to have staff available to keep customers up to date on new developments and titles.” [The Chronicle Herald]
An odd little remix of Art Spiegelman’s Maus caused a bit of a stir at this year’s Angouleme International Comics Festival (of which Spiegelman was the honorary president), and now it looks like the remaining copies of the book will be destroyed at the behest of Spiegelman’s publisher.
French cartoonist Boulet, who has worked on Dungeon with Lewis Trondheim and Joann Sfar, participated in a 24 Hour Comics event during the Angouleme Festival and came away with a delightful story called “Darkness,” which is kind of what it might be like to be roomies with Morpheus or Gerard Way from My Chemical Romance or the brooding elf from Dragon Age 2 or some other dark, mysterious, handsome stranger that can make the girls swoon just by the way he walks into the room. Boulet nails it perfectly and sticks the landing on a fun story.
Rich Tommaso has had a varied career—his Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow (written by James Sturm) won an Eisner and several Glyph awards, and he has had a long relationship with Gary Groth and Fantagraphics; currently he is re-coloring Carl Barks comics for Fanta’s collected edition of Barks’s works.
Yet for some reason, Tommaso has had a hard time getting his work published in the U.S.—until now. Yesterday, BOOM! Studios announced that they will publish Tommaso’s graphic novel Pete and Miriam in March under their BOOM! Town imprint. Pete and Miriam has already been published in French, and his bio lists a Spanish edition due out in 2013. “I kept working on it because I had this contract in France but no one was biting on it here,” Tommaso told Tom Spurgeon in an in-depth interview at The Comics Reporter in November. “I went to Angouleme last year and it was amazing how many people came up to me and talked to me about the book. They wanted to know when a second one would be out. There was a lot of excitement for it.” Let’s hope American readers warm to it as well—Tommaso is an artist whose time has come.
Organizations | The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund has named Alex Cox as its deputy director, responsible for oversight of the organization’s home office and fundraising program. Cox, who came to the CBLDF in 2010, previously served as development manager. [CBLDF]
Publishing | Marvel Talent Coordinator Bon Alimagno is leaving the publisher for a position at San Francisco-based software company The Apollo Group. Previously editor of Harris Comics, Alimagno handled freelance scheduling at Marvel, working with David Bogart, the publisher’s senior vice president of business affairs and talent management. [The Beat]
Graphic novels | The Texas Library Association posts its 2012 Maverick Graphic Novel Reading List of recommendations for tweens and teens. [Texas Library Association]