Typical. I go out to the pub with freelance-workmates and Wizard suddenly change their Chicago Comic Con dates and Dynamite Entertainment buy the Dabel Bros titles, such as Mercy Thompson, Fear Nothing and The Warriors . Heidi MacDonald told me that when she took a day off, Disney bought Marvel. Anyway.
I had two questions to put to Nick Barrucci of Dynamite. And, to his credit, he answered them.
First, I mentioned that very other publisher that has worked with the Dabels – Devil’s Due, Image, Marvel, Del Rey, etc had ended up parting company with the Dabels in often sudden and contentious circumstances. So I asked why did Dynamite believe they wouldn’t be one of them?
Nick told me;
We had some really long heart to hearts with them, and asked them if they would be comfortable focusing on what they do best, which is to speak with authors and acquire properties. And we would handle all of everything else!
Which presumably means managing the business, paying people in a timely and correct fashion, and cutting down on those interminable Dabel delays. I then asked if Dynamite was assuming responsibility for any and/or all debts that Dabel have to members and companies in the comics industry (such as this and this and this)- on the basis that I still hear from comic creators owed sums by the Dabels, both large and small, who are increasingly worried about getting the money owed to them. Nick told me;
It’s an asset acquisition. Having said that we are working with the Dabels to pay some creators and they will be paying other creators based on their funds as they come in starting next year. We’re evaluating everything and we’re rolling up our sleeves to help out as many creators as possible. It will not be easy, but it should be good to get more fans reading comics from outside the comics market
I asked Nick what a comics creator still owed thousand by the Dabels should do in such circumstances and he told me;
They should ask me if Dynamite can help and we’ll give them a straight answer – yes, no, partially, whatever we can do.
Nick then elaborated on his original answer saying;
The Dabels owed a lot of money, this is going to be a lot of hard work on our part to try and make everything right, odds are we will not please everyone, but the truth of the matter is that if we did not come in and do this deal, everyone would have lost everything, and then the rebuilding would have been far worse. We do not have unlimited funds, and we have to pay what we can to keep this going and rebuild it. Otherwise, we’re back to square one which means no one getting anything, which is not the goal. There are some creators we are going to work with to help out, and there will be others who will be taken care of by the Dabels as they start seeing some money from this.
I’ll be keeping an eye on this but all kudos to Nick Barrucci for stepping up to the plate here. But it’s also quite terrifying to understand just what a state the Dabels must have been in before Nick stepped in. I understand he is also guaranteeing Davels employees jobs, at least through the holiday season.