April 17, 2021
The Hollywood Reporter: The Next Marvel? Indie Publishers Race to Mine Comics for Film, TV

APRIL 16, 2021 11:15AM by Graeme McMillan

New competitors including Artists, Writers & Artisans; AfterShock; and Valiant Comics focus on a leaner publishing output and an eye toward adaptations.

To Axel Alonso, there’s something that comic books are capable of that no other media can match. “Comics are the ideal medium for producing truly ground-breaking work that creates IP that can come alive for generations,” he tells The Hollywood Reporter. “Comic fans are in the vanguard of pop culture — they are incredibly discerning, so when a character, story or series resonates with them, you know you have a hit on your hands.”

Alonso knows what he’s talking about. As editor, and later editor-in-chief, of Marvel Comics from 2000 through 2017, he was a key figure in guiding the company from bankruptcy to the cultural behemoth it became, returning key franchises such as Spider-Man and the X-Men to fan-favorite status. Since 2018, he’s been chief creative officer and editor-in-chief of start-up publisher Artists, Writers & Artisans, one of a new generation of comic publishers positioning themselves as the next Marvel to not only fans, but potential investors and business partners.

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