"Rowdy" Roddy Piper Reported Dead at 61
Udon Entertainment announced at Comic-Con International in San Diego that it has acquired one of the most sought-after manga licenses ever, Ryoko Ikeda’s “Rose of Versailles,” as well as two other series: Moyoco Anno’s “Sugar Sugar Rune,” which was previously published by Del Rey Manga, and “Stein’s Gate” based on the “Steins;Gate” video game.
“Rose of Versailles,” set in the court of the French queen Marie Antoinette, is one of the most popular and influential manga of all time, and became a shared experience for a generation of Japanese women. The main character in the story is Oscar Francois de Jarjayes, the youngest daughter of the leader of the palace guard, who is raised as a man so she can succeed her father. The story mingles real historical events with romance, drama, and palace intrigue, with Oscar in the center and Marie Antoinette, her paramour Count Axel von Ferson, and Oscar’s childhood friend Andre Grandier all playing major roles.
The announcement, made Friday at Comic-Con International in San Diego, was accompanied by the digital release of seven licensed and original comics and graphic novels from UNDON’s back catalog: Street Fighter #0-4, by Ken Siu-Chong, Arnold Tsang, Alvin Lee, Alan Tam and others; Makeshift Miracle #1, by Jim Zub and Shun Hong Chan; and Super Street Fighter, Vol. 1: New Generations, by Ken Siu-Chong, Jim Zub, Chris Sims, Jeffrey Chamba Cruz, Sean Galloway, Joe Ng, Gonzalo Ordonez Arias, Long Vo, Omar Dogan and Edwin Huang.
Those initial seven titles will be followed by more from UDON’s back catalog, with new comics receiving same-day digital release.
“We’re very excited to have many of UDON’s original and licensed works available through comiXology,” UDON Publisher Erik Ko said in a press release. “We’ve been working hard to secure digital rights for many of our licenses for the past several years, and we’ve prepared a slate of licensed comics and graphic novels from our Street Fighter and Darkstalkers line, as well as selections from our manga, art book, and original graphic novel series’ that fans are really going to love.”
ComiXology announced a similar distribution agreement on Thursday with manga publisher Seven Seas Entertainment.
Everyone may be talking ab out this summer’s face-off between the Avengers and this X-Men, but that fight is patty-cake compared to the drawn-out gang war between Marvel and Capcom. As shown in a string of hit video games whose sales eclipse AvX 10 times over, people love seeing Street Fighter characters go up against Marvel’s finest. And now, comic fans — and video game fans — have a chance to find out more about the other side of that equation.
Earlier this month, UDON announced it’s re-releasing its string of Street Fighter comics to new audiences, and not just in print. Earlier this week, the publisher revealed it will begin serializing its Street Fighter comics — for free! — at StreetFighterComics.com. According to UDON, a new page will be published every weekday, with printed editions coming later this year.
Street Fighter has always seemed like a concept ideal for comics, and UDON has a lot of quality material that wasn’t given its due on initial release, so I’m excited for this to happen. I hope this is successful enough that they’ll re-release Sharknife artist Corey Lewis’ Rival Schools miniseries and the Street Fighter shorts he did a few years back.
Friday was a busy day in San Diego, with a full slate of announcements capped by the Eisner Awards in the evening.
• Image Comics will resurrect the classic television show MacGyver as a five-issue miniseries written by MacGyver creator Lee David Zlotoff and Doctor Who writer Tony Lee, and illustrated by Becky Cloonan.
• Brian Wood’s newest project was announced — The Massive, about environmentalists who survive the last environmental collapse. The comic will start its run in Dark Horse Presents #8 in January.
• Vertigo Executive Editor Karen Berger confirmed that Scalped will end with issue #60.
• Marvel teased the return of the Scarlet Spider.
• DC Comics released more interior art for several of their “New 52″ titles, including Aquaman, Mister Terrific and more.
The good folks at UDON Entertainment will be at the San Diego Comic-Con later this month, and they were kind enough to send over details on the books they’ll be selling at their booth (#5037). Their list includes Street Fighter Legends and MegaMan hardcovers, as well as their first-ever original graphic novel, RandomVeus by Jeffrey “Chamba” Cruz. You can also find details on booth signings and their panel below ….
Comic-Con International: San Diego 2011 marks the beginning of UDON’s second decade of operations, and one of its biggest San Diego outtings ever!
With three new books debuting at Comic-Con (including 2 con-exclusives!) and more than 16 creators in attendance signing and sketching every day, no comics, video game, or art fan is going to want to miss out on all the great stuff going down at UDON, booth #5037!
Art Books and Graphic Novels Debuting at Comic-Con:
MEGA MAN TRIBUTE HC
Celebrating over 20 years of the ‘blue bomber!’
Hundreds of artists from around the world join forces to pay homage to one of the most iconic figures in gaming with Mega Man Tribute! This 300+ page, full-colour art book is the ultimate celebration of the blue bomber, featuring the characters of Mega Man classic, Mega Man X, Mega Man Zero, Mega Man ZX, and Mega Man Legends in every style you can imagine! Includes original pieces by comics superstars Hitoshi Ariga (Mega Man: Megamix), Sean “Cheeks” Galloway (Teen Titans: GO!), Sanford Greene (Dark Horse Presents), and many more!
Premiering at Comic-Con, this limited edition hardcover version features exclusive cover art by Mega Man manga artist Hitoshi Ariga (Megamix, Gigamix) that will not be available on the softcover! This HC is a convention/UDON exclusive! Limited to 500 copies. SRP $80.
Toronto-based publisher Udon Entertainment, best known for comics based on Capcom games like Street Fighter, is launching a new line of original graphic novels—and dropping the monthly-comic format.
The line is launching with the first volume of RandomVeus, an original graphic novel by Jeffrey “Chamba” Cruz, who has honed his skills working on Udon’s Street Fighter graphic novels. Here’s the publisher’s brief description, which I could not possibly improve upon:
Created by Jeffrey ‘Chamba’ Cruz and co-writer Leonard Bermingham, RandomVeus stars bouffant-sporting hero Raimundo and the team of One-Dimensional Couriers as they deliver mysterious packages to every corner of the wild world known as the RandomVeus! Octopus ninjas, jazz-playing demons, buxom lady-pirates, cyborg gorillas, samurai mushrooms, and one giant furry squid monster are all on tap in this zaniest of zany adventures!
That certainly seems to have a lot of crowd-pleasers, but don’t go looking for a monthly fix: Udon will be publishing these original stories strictly as graphic novels in an amply sized 8″ x 11″ format, and they plan to move in that direction with their game-based comics as well.
“We want to give our artists’ stories the best presentation possible right out the gate, so our focus is shifting to this deluxe format for our releases, dropping the monthly ‘floppy’ comic entirely,” says UDON managing editor Matt Moylan. “While comic book sales are down all over the industry, UDON continues to do very well with our trade paperbacks and art books. We’re taking the best of both by producing full length graphic novels at the same oversized dimensions that readers of our art books and ‘Ultimate Edition’ collections have come to enjoy.”
Welcome to What Are You Reading?, where we talk about what comics and other stuff we’ve been reading lately.
Today’s special guest is Joe Keatinge, writer and co-creator of the upcoming Image comic Brutal with Frank Cho. He’s also the writer of the final “Twisted Savage Dragon Funnies” installment in April’s Savage Dragon #171, drawn by Savage Dragon creator Erik Larsen, Billy Dogma’s Dean Haspiel, Nikolai Dante’s Simon Fraser, Parade (With Fireworks)’s Mike Cavallaro, The Transmigration of Ultra Lad’s Joe Infurnari, Fahrenheit 451: The Authorized Adaptation’s Tim Hamilton and Olympians’ George O’Connor. He’s also executive editor of the PopGun anthology, he’s got an ongoing series coming soon that he can’t say anything else about and with his fellow studio members at Tranquility Base, regularly beats up on 13 year olds at laser tag.
To see what Joe and the Robot 6 crew have been reading lately, click below.