DC lands North American publishing rights to 2000 AD

DC Comics, leading US publisher of comic books and graphic novels, has acquired the North American publishing rights to existing and future comic-book material from UK publisher Rebellion.

Rebellion is the publisher of 2000 AD and the Judge Dredd Megazine, the weekly and monthly titles featuring the world-renowned film and video game character Judge Dredd. Rebellion has published many creatively groundbreaking graphic novels by such comics superstars as Garth Ennis, Simon Bisley, Frank Quitely, Mark Millar, Chris Weston, Sean Phillips, Glenn Fabry, and many more.

Paul Levitz, President & Publisher of DC Comics (a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company) and Jason Kingsley, Co-founder, CEO and Creative Director of Rebellion, announce that plans are for the publication of 36 books per year for distribution in the North American comics specialty market and in trade bookstores. DC's current plans are to focus primarily on graphic novels and trade paperback collections.

"The Rebellion catalog expands the already diverse offerings of DC's publishing output," said Levitz, "and much of it is done by writers and artists beloved by our readership, so we're delighted to be able to connect them to these great stories. The wonderful work done on 2000 AD over the years was one of the important bridges that led to the so-called 'British Invasion' of American comics, so it feels like these titles were always meant to be with our line."

"2000 AD and its sister publication The Judge Dredd Megazine are hugely influential and popular in Europe," said Kingsley. "We are looking forward to working closely with the professional and creative powerhouse that is DC, and are excited about introducing our vast catalog of characters, worlds and stories to a wider readership."

The first books from DC are scheduled for September 2004, beginning with The Batman/Judge Dredd Files (written by John Wagner and Alan Grant, with art by Simon Bisley, Carl Critchlow, Dermot Power, Glenn Fabry, Jim Murray, and Jason Brashill) and Sinister Dexter: Gunshark Vacation (written by Dan Abnett, with art by David Millgate, Anthony Williams, Charles Gillespie, Simon Davis, and Henry Flint.)

Future plans include such projects as Devlin Waugh: Swimming in Blood (written by John Smith, with art by Sean Phillips, Siku, and Michael Gaydos), Red Razors (written by Mark Millar, with art by Steve Yeowell and Nigel Dobbyn), Judge Dredd: Judgment Day (written by Garth Ennis, with art by Peter Doherty, Dean Ormston, Carlos Ezquerra, and Chris Halls), Nikolai Dante: The Romanov Dynasty (written by Robbie Morrison, with art by Simon Fraser, Chris Weston, Charlie Adlard, and Henry Flint), Robo-Hunter: Verdus (written by John Wagner, with art by Ian Gibson), and Shimura (written by Robbie Morrison, with art by Frank Quitely, Colin MacNeil, Robert McCallum and Fraser.)

Formats and prices will be announced at the time of solicitation for each book.

"The Rebellion library," said Levitz, "allows DC to continue its growth with the consistent goal of attracting more readers to comics."

UK based computer games super-developer Rebellion® was started in 1991 by brothers Jason and Chris Kingsley. Rebellion has developed such games as the double BAFTA-nominated Aliens Vs. Predator for 20th Century Fox on the PC, which was launched to worldwide acclaim in 1999 and reached the number one slot in games charts throughout the world. Recent games include World War Zero, Sniper Elite, Delta Force: Urban Warfare, Rainbow Six: Lone Wolf and Tiger Woods PGA Tour Golf.

In June 2000 Rebellion purchased 2000 AD and its entire character portfolio. In November 2003, Rebellion launched Judge Dredd®: Dredd vs. Death on PlayStation 2, Xbox, PC CD ROM and Gamecube to universal acclaim. Rebellion is now working on a number of further games featuring 2000 AD characters, and has recently announced plans to make two new Judge Dredd movies with Shoreline films in the US.

2000 AD(tm) is the self-styled "Galaxy's Greatest Comic." Launched in the late seventies and published weekly ever since, it has been the standard bearer of British sci-fi for over 27 years. Many of the world's best writers and artists began their careers with 2000 AD and continue to produce cutting edge work for the title. This has resulted in the titles winning many prestigious awards. Judge Dredd first appeared in issue 2 and has maintained his position as the comics favorite character ever since. Judge Dredd also appears daily in the London Metro newspaper.

The Judge Dredd Megazine is a 100-page monthly publication. Launched in 1990, the Megazine has enabled 2000 AD writers and artists to produce characters and storylines with a greater depth and scope appealing the mature market.

Reporter: Jamie Boardman