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By Chris Kaltenbach | January 9, 2002
Back in November 1939, the artists responsible for the first issue of Marvel Comics were paid about $15 a page for their efforts. The book itself, which introduced the Human Torch and Sub-Mariner to the world, could be purchased at newsstands for a dime. What a difference 63 years can make. Last week, a nearly flawless copy of that magazine, in pretty much the same condition as the day it came off the presses, sold for an astonishing $350,000 M-y a new record for a single comic book. "In many ways, I feel like I sold it way too cheap," said Steve Geppi, president of Baltimore-based Diamond Comic Distributors.
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NEWS
By Leonard Pitts Jr | March 12, 2013
Perhaps you remember when Dr. Doom conquered the world. Or perhaps you don't. Sadly enough, even in this day and age, not everyone is comic book literate. Suffice it to say, then, that back in the 1980s, Marvel Comics published a graphic novel in which the villainous Victor von Doom achieved his dearest goal: to rule the world. And he made it a better place, too. Famine ended, the stock market climbed, crime fell, occupying armies withdrew, racial oppression vanished. Doom turned the planet into a paradise, and the only cost of his beneficence was free will.
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FEATURES
By KNIGHT-RIDDER NEWS SERVICE | August 28, 1997
CANTON, Ohio -- Comic-book creator Mark Gruenwald's dying wish was to be thrown into the pages of his work. Literally.So, after his death, the Marvel Comics writer and editor's body was cremated, and his ashes combined with ink. The ink, mixed by a Canton company, was used to print the 12-part comic series "Squadron Supreme" as a single volume.The 100-page book, which reveals in the foreword the mixture of artist and ink, flies into stores today."He remained true to his passion for comics, as he has truly become one with the story and blended himself in the very fiber of the book in his ultimate desire for uniqueness and a brush with immortality of sorts," his widow, Catherine Gruenwald, writes in the foreword of the new book.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Chris Kaltenbach, The Baltimore Sun | August 18, 2011
Stan Lee is one proud father these days. You'd be proud, too, if your progeny included Spider-Man, Iron Man, Thor and the Fantastic Four — characters whose films routinely bring in a few hundred million dollars at the movie box office. Not that Lee has much to do with the movies themselves: His connection is restricted to a largely honorary executive-producer credit and a cameo in each film — as a swinging Hugh Hefner-type in "Iron Man," mailman Willie Limpkin in "Fantastic Four," an Army general in this summer's "Captain America.
BUSINESS
By Floyd Norris and Floyd Norris,New York Times News Service | July 17, 1991
NEW YORK -- While much of publishing is in the doldrums, comic books are booming, in large part because companies have discovered that they can raise prices without driving away many buyers.Now, the owner of Marvel Comics, the largest comics operation, is trying to sell a minority stake in Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk, Captain America and all its other superheroes to the public.Investors seem to be lining up to buy shares in the company, Marvel Entertainment Group Inc., and late last week the company increased both the number of shares being offered and the price being asked.
BUSINESS
By Greg Schneider and Greg Schneider,SUN STAFF | February 8, 1997
Spiderman came crawling back.Marvel Comics has brought the web slinger and other top industry characters back to Stephen Geppi's Diamond Comic Distributors Inc. just two years after walking away, giving the Timonium company a virtual monopoly on supplying comic books to U.S. specialty stores.Marvel had removed its industry-leading roster of comics from Diamond in early 1995, when the publisher formed its own distribution company.With Marvel Entertainment Group now in Chapter 11 bankruptcy, it has disbanded its Heroes World wholesaler and signed an exclusive service agreement with Diamond.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Gene Seymour and Gene Seymour,NEWSDAY | July 7, 2005
The Fantastic Four and I bonded at a perfect time. It was in the mid-1960s, and I was in my early teens. If there is ever a time in one's life when one desperately needs over-inflated dreams of power and glory, it's at that low point in your adolescence when it seems as if all you do is trip over curbs and sputter awkwardly in public places. And Marvel Comics, especially in those years, felt my pain. Who else would have come up with Peter Parker, a nerdy, neurotic high school student transformed into (insert guitar riff here)
FEATURES
By Steve McKerrow and Steve McKerrow,Staff Writer | December 12, 1993
Two of the comic book world's fiercest warriors -- Warblade and Ripclaw -- are about to join in the battle of their lives, a slashing fight against evil that was born . . . in a convivial California hot tub?It's true, explains artist Jim Lee. The idea to merge the blade-wielding characters of the Image Comics series "WildC.A.T.S" and "Cyberforce" into a new crossover plot line began to take form during a soak."It was Marc's birthday, we were sitting in his hot tub drinking champagne, and we just started talking about the story line and put it together," recounts Mr. Lee over the phone from his San Diego studio.
SPORTS
By Ruth Sadler and Ruth Sadler,Sun Staff Writer | August 21, 1994
Major-league baseball players are on strike, but, for collectors, the season continues.The baseball card calendar still has entries for the 1994 season, and the manufacturers say these cards will be out on schedule.Donruss' Studio comes out this month, and a new high-end card, Leaf Limited, makes its debut in September. Fleer's remaining baseball sets are super-sized Extra Bases (this month), Fleer update (September) and Flair's second series (September). For Pinnacle, the remaining sets are rookie and traded sets for Score September)
NEWS
July 11, 1992
IT MIGHT BE pocket change for millionaire Bruce Wayne, Batman's alter ego, but most of us couldn't imagine spending $100,000 on a comic book. That's what a Virginia dentist-comic collector did recently, and he bought it from Steve Geppi of Woodlawn, a nationally known comic distributor.The sale of Marvel Comics No. 1 is the highest ever paid for a comic. The exchange of eye-popping sums for kids' books is old hat for Mr. Geppi. Last February, he pocketed $75,000 for the first comic in which Batman appeared, "Detective Comics" No. 27 (May 1939)
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael Sragow, The Baltimore Sun | December 17, 2010
Conviction, passion and creativity crackle and swing with a jazzy euphoria when you talk to Julie Taymor about art, whether the tragicomedy of the Bard or the myth-making of Marvel Comics. The director who brought experimental techniques to the Great White Way with "The Lion King" returns to screen and stage this winter with a rare aesthetic one-two combination. Taymor has unveiled a lyrical, thrilllingly lucid film of Shakespeare's "The Tempest," starring Helen Mirren, while completing the hugely ambitious and elaborate Broadway musical, " Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark," which boasts a score by Bono and the Edge.
FEATURES
By Michael Sragow and Chris Kaltenbach and Michael Sragow and Chris Kaltenbach,Sun Reporters | May 2, 2008
Even more than his love of gadgets, more than his appreciation of the comic-book ethos that inspired Iron Man, director Jon Favreau's success in bringing the Marvel Comics superhero to the big screen came down to his success as a mediator. Consider the creative forces he had to bring together. There was Iron Man himself, Robert Downey Jr., an actor of unquestioned talent and commanding presence, but one weighed down by a personal life that hasn't always been his greatest asset. There were the folks at Marvel Comics, gatekeepers of the Iron Man mythology since his creation in 1963, who were bankrolling their first movie (after depending on others for such mega-franchises as Spider-Man, X-Men and Fantastic Four)
NEWS
December 12, 2006
MARTIN NODELL, 91 Illustrator Martin Nodell, an illustrator who helped invent two iconic characters - the comic book superhero Green Lantern and baker's hero the Pillsbury Doughboy - died Saturday at a hospice near Waukesha, Wis. He was one of the few surviving artists from the Golden Age of comic books. It was a subway ride in Manhattan that inspired Green Lantern. En route to his Brooklyn home in 1940, Mr. Nodell noticed a trainman waving a lantern along the darkened tracks. He coupled the imagery with a magic ring - akin to Wagner's Ring Cycle, which also inspired The Lord of the Rings - and the hero was born.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Chris Kaltenbach and Chris Kaltenbach,SUN MOVIE CRITIC | July 10, 2005
Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O'Hara? Surely, you jest. She's no Southerner! Why, she's not even American! Michael Keaton as Batman? The Dark Knight? A hero who's all brooding menace and pent-up fury, being played by a comedian? Pass the smelling salts. Jessica Alba as Sue Storm, the Invisible Girl/Woman? A dark-haired, exotic beauty playing the blond, WASP-y Sue? Must be a mistake. Hollywood has made some seemingly odd casting choices over the years, and the outcry has been fierce. Obsessed fans, emotionally vested in characters that many of them have grown up with, all have in mind a certain image of their heroes.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Gene Seymour and Gene Seymour,NEWSDAY | July 7, 2005
The Fantastic Four and I bonded at a perfect time. It was in the mid-1960s, and I was in my early teens. If there is ever a time in one's life when one desperately needs over-inflated dreams of power and glory, it's at that low point in your adolescence when it seems as if all you do is trip over curbs and sputter awkwardly in public places. And Marvel Comics, especially in those years, felt my pain. Who else would have come up with Peter Parker, a nerdy, neurotic high school student transformed into (insert guitar riff here)
BUSINESS
By BLOOMBERG NEWS | May 9, 2003
NEW YORK -Marvel Enterprises Inc. Chief Executive Officer Allen Lipson said yesterday that he plans to sell 20 percent of his stake in the company. Lipson said in an interview that he plans to sell 100,000 of his 500,000 shares in Marvel, which publishes "Spider-Man" and other comics. Avi Arad, the company's chief creative officer, plans to sell 2 million of his shares, or about a third of his holdings, Lipson said. "We don't have a profit-sharing plan," Lipson said. "We don't have a pension plan.
FEATURES
By New York Times News Service | October 28, 1992
The movie "Batman Returns" may not have lived up to expectations -- critically or commercially -- but that hasn't dampened Hollywood's interest in the comics. At least four dozen adaptations of comics are currently in production or development for nonanimated films."It's hard to find comic characters that Hollywood isn't interested in," says Pam Rutt, publicity director of Marvel Comics. Indeed, filmmakers have optioned the rights to such Marvel characters as Spider-Man, Daredevil, Dr. Strange, the Incredible Hulk, X-Men, Ghost Rider, Thor and Blade the Vampire Hunter.
FEATURES
By Michael Sragow and Chris Kaltenbach and Michael Sragow and Chris Kaltenbach,Sun Reporters | May 2, 2008
Even more than his love of gadgets, more than his appreciation of the comic-book ethos that inspired Iron Man, director Jon Favreau's success in bringing the Marvel Comics superhero to the big screen came down to his success as a mediator. Consider the creative forces he had to bring together. There was Iron Man himself, Robert Downey Jr., an actor of unquestioned talent and commanding presence, but one weighed down by a personal life that hasn't always been his greatest asset. There were the folks at Marvel Comics, gatekeepers of the Iron Man mythology since his creation in 1963, who were bankrolling their first movie (after depending on others for such mega-franchises as Spider-Man, X-Men and Fantastic Four)
FEATURES
By Chris Kaltenbach | January 9, 2002
Back in November 1939, the artists responsible for the first issue of Marvel Comics were paid about $15 a page for their efforts. The book itself, which introduced the Human Torch and Sub-Mariner to the world, could be purchased at newsstands for a dime. What a difference 63 years can make. Last week, a nearly flawless copy of that magazine, in pretty much the same condition as the day it came off the presses, sold for an astonishing $350,000 M-y a new record for a single comic book. "In many ways, I feel like I sold it way too cheap," said Steve Geppi, president of Baltimore-based Diamond Comic Distributors.
FEATURES
By Judith Green and Judith Green,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | April 18, 1998
The Scandinavian fairy tale "East of the Sun and West of the Moon" is a quest like any other.Its heroine, Bridgett, goes on a long journey to fulfill a promise. Along the way, as is the custom in these stories, she finds friends and talismans for comfort and assistance.In the production tomorrow of "East of the Sun and West of the Moon" by the Moving Company and Liminal Theater, one of those unexpected friends is a mute artist who sits at his easel, dashing off drawings in answer to Bridgett's questions.
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