NEW YORK, NY - December 9, 2007 - Marvel Entertainment and Del Rey Manga, an imprint of Ballantine Books at the Random House Publishing Group, announced today plans to publish two new manga series based on Marvel Entertainment's highly popular X-Men series.
The manga, created with the cooperation and consultation of Marvel editors, will take the classic characters from the X-Men series and re-imagine them in a manga style. The first project, scripted by the husband-and-wife team of Raina Telgemeier (writer and illustrator of The Babysitter's Club graphic novels) and Dave Roman (creator of the comic Agnes Quill), will focus specifically on the X-Men team. Indonesian artist Anzu will illustrate the two-volume series, which will go on sale in Spring 2009.
It's the X-Men as you've never seen them before, with the storyline fashioned as a private school shôjo comedy. (Shôjo manga is aimed at girls and often covers popular subjects such as comedy, romance, and drama.) As the only girl in the all-boys School for Gifted Youngsters, Kitty Pryde, a mutant with phasing abilities, is torn between the popular Hellfire Club, led by flame-throwing mutant Pyro--and the school misfits, whom she eventually bands together as the X-Men.
A second manga series, to be published in Spring 2009, follows the adventures of Wolverine, a breakout member of the X-Men team known for his attitude and unbreakable adamantium claws.
Dallas Middaugh, associate publisher of Del Rey Manga, says, "The X-Men are some of the most well-known characters in the world, and it's the strength of those characters-along with strong and unique storylines-that make the X-Men a perfect match for the manga form. It's an amazing opportunity, and we're eager to bring new interpretations to the fans through the prism of manga."
The X-Men made their comics debut in The X-Men #1 in 1963 and have since become a mainstream pop culture phenomenon with the development of an animated television series, several video games and a blockbuster live-action film trilogy.
Ruwan Jayatilleke, Vice President of development of Marvel Entertainment, Inc., said "Del Rey Manga has been an innovative force in the manga landscape---consistently growing the medium and breaking the boundaries of print. We have found a partner who will bring the X-Men and Wolverine into the fastest growing segment of graphic fiction, with superior storytelling and visual fireworks. Comic book fans and manga readers have much to look forward to."
Manga, the Japanese term for comics, is a Japanese cultural phenomenon that accounts for nearly half of all the books and magazines sold in Japan. Read by men and women of all ages, manga covers a wide variety of themes including adventure, romance, fantasy, and more. Manga has experienced incredible growth in the US and Canadian graphic novel market in the past few years. According to industry source ICv2 manga sales reached between $170 million and $200 million in 2006.
About the Creators
Raina Telgemeier is best known for her work as the writer and illustrator of The Babysitter's Club graphic novels. She received her BFA from the School of Visual Arts and has been nominated for numerous awards, including the Eisner, Ignatz, Cybil, and Web Cartoonists' Choice awards.
Dave Roman currently works for Nickelodeon Magazine as an associate editor. The co-creator of the Harvey Award-nominated series Jax Epoch and the Quicken Forbidden and the Ignatz award-winning Teen Boat, he also pens his own webcomic, Astronaut Elementary. He is also the creator of the comic Agnes Quill.
Anzu, a manga artist based in Indonesia, will make her US manga art debut in April 2008 with the first volume of The Reformed, written by Chris Hart. She has contributed to Hart's bestselling How to Draw Manga series.
About Del Rey Manga
Del Rey Books (http://www.delreybooks.com/ <http://www.delreybooks.com/> ) was founded in 1977 as an imprint of Ballantine Books, a division of the Random House Publishing Group, under the guidance of the renowned Judy-Lynn del Rey and her husband, Lester del Rey. Del Rey publishes the best of modern fantasy, science fiction, and alternate history. Ballantine Books is an imprint of the Random House Publishing Group, which is a publishing group of Random House, Inc, the U.S. publishing company of Random House, the trade book publishing division of Bertelsmann AG, one of the world's leading international media companies. In 2004 it expanded by launching Del Rey Manga (http://www.delreymanga.com/), which has grown to be a major force in the U.S. graphic-novel field. Bestselling titles include Tsubasa, Negima, xxxHolic, and The Wallflower.
About Marvel Entertainment, Inc.
With a library of over 5,000 high-profile characters built over more than sixty years of comic book publishing, Marvel Entertainment, Inc. is one of the world's most prominent character-based entertainment companies. Marvel utilizes its character franchises in licensing, entertainment (via Marvel Studios), publishing (via Marvel Comics) and toys, with emphasis on feature films, home DVD, consumer products, video games, action figures and role-playing toys, television and promotions. Marvel's strategy is to leverage its franchises in a growing array of opportunities around the world. For more information visit http://www.marvel.com/.
X-Men, Wolverine: TM & © 2007 Marvel Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.