Exhibitors, creators pull out of ECCC over coronavirus concerns [Updated]

Emerald City Comic Con offers refunds to attendees who aren’t comfortable attending.

Multiple exhibitors, including DC Comics, Dark Horse and Penguin Random House, have announced they will no longer attend this year’s Emerald City Comic Con, citing concerns over the coronavirus (COVID-19). Seattle, ECCC’s host city, has seen nine people die of the virus since Feb. 26.

In a statement to the Hollywood Reporter, DC Comics said they are cancelling all of their convention appearances for the rest of March.

In addition, several comics creators, including Jim Zub, Jen Bartel, Benjamin Percy, Richard Pace, Christian Ward and Jody LeHeup, have said they will no longer appear at ECCC.

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Smash Pages Q&A: Malaka Gharib

The creator of ‘I Was Their American Dream’ discusses zine culture, being creative every day and more.

Malaka Gharib has been making comics and zines for years now, including The Runcible Spoon, a zine about food and fantasy she’s been making since 2010. Last year her first book I Was Their American Dream was released, looking at growing up as a Filipino-Egyptian in the United States and exploring questions of race, identity and belonging in different ways. 

Gharib has an active and entertaining Twitter and Instagram presence where she’s regularly making art, putting together things like a “5 minute zine” or other small projects. In her day job, Gharib is a writer and editor at NPR in Washington, D.C. She recently made an episode of the podcast Life Kit, about weaving art into your everyday life. We spoke recently about the book, zine culture and trying to make one creative thing a day.

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Comics Lowdown: Who owns Atlas Comics?

Plus: Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award recipients, Paige Braddock, Frank Santoro, Dr. Gene Luen Yang and more!

Who exactly owns Atlas Comics? That seems to be the question raised in two articles from The Hollywood Reporter. Earlier this month Steven Paul, producer of the Ghost Rider film, announced via a press conference that he had bought the rights to the Atlas Comics and planned to work with Paramount to turn the properties into movies. Not so fast, said Dynamite Entertainment, who followed up by telling THR that they own the name “Atlas Comics.”

Many of you may be wondering “What the heck was Atlas Comics?” while others might be thinking, “Wait, wasn’t Atlas the company that eventually evolved into Marvel Comics in the 1960s?” And still others are wondering, “Didn’t he learn his lesson after Ghost Rider?”

But getting back to Atlas, yes, there was an Atlas Comics in the 1950s that grew out of Timely Comics and eventually became Marvel Comics. It was owned by publisher Martin Goodman, and it put out comics in a variety of genres like horror, crime, espionage and even a few superhero titles featuring characters like Captain America and the Human Torch, who had previously been published under the Timely banner. However, this isn’t that Atlas Comics.

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