Valiant Comics


Valiant Comics is a comic book company founded in 1989, acquired in 1994 by video game company Acclaim Entertainment, and acquired by Valiant Entertainment in 2007.


General Informations

Official Name: Valiant Comics
Status: 
Founded: 1989/2008
Founder: Jim Shooter, Bob Layton
Country of origin: 
Headquarters location: New York City
Publication types: 
Fiction genres: 
Imprints: 

History

Voyager Communications

In 1988, former editor-in-chief of Marvel Comics Jim Shooter, former manager of the Allman Brothers Band Steven J. Massarsky, and a group of investors attempted to purchase Marvel Entertainment. They submitted the second highest bid, with financier Ronald Perelman submitting the highest bid and acquiring Marvel.
Shooter and Massarsky instead formed Voyager Communications in 1989 with significant venture capital financing from Triumph Capital. After publishing licensed comics with Nintendo and the World Wrestling Federation, Voyager repositioned itself to focus on its initial plan – creating original superhero comic books under the Valiant Comics imprint.

Valiant recruited numerous writers and artists from Marvel, including industry legend Barry Windsor-Smith, creator of Wolverine's acclaimed Weapon X storyline, and Bob Layton, architect of many of Iron Man's key stories.
Shooter, Windsor-Smith, and Layton served at the creative helm of Valiant, and they recruited a diverse group of both veteran and young creators to complete their team. Valiant launched an interconnected line of superhero comics with Western Publishing licensed characters and then turned to creating an original universe of characters.
In 1992, Valiant released original titles, including Harbinger, X-O Manowar, Rai, and Shadowman, followed by a major crossover event called Unity, during which Eternal Warrior and Archer & Armstrong were introduced. Harbinger #1 was listed on the top ten List of Wizard Magazine, the industry's leading trade magazine, for a record eight consecutive months and was eventually named "Collectible of the Decade," while Rai #0 appeared on Wizard's top ten list for a new record nine consecutive months. In 1992, Valiant's Editor-In-Chief Jim Shooter was given the Lifetime Achievement Award for co-creating the Valiant Universe.

Valiant also pioneered a number of marketing innovations, such as the zero "origin" issues, the gold logo program, coupons redeemable for original comic books, and chromium covers. Following the popular Unity crossover, Valiant released Bloodshot, Ninjak, H.A.R.D. Corps, Second Life of Dr. Mirage, and Timewalker, among other titles. Valiant's market share reached a level almost identical to DC Comics, a company whose characters were created 50 years earlier, and in 1993 Valiant was named Publisher of the Year ahead of Marvel Comics and DC Comics. In terms of sales, Valiant's comics rivaled those of the industry leaders Marvel, DC, and Image. During this period, comics based on Valiant's characters regularly occupied numerous spots in Wizard Top 10 hottest comics of a given month. Bloodshot, X-O Manowar, Rai, Shadowman, Ninjak, Eternal Warrior and others would compete with Batman, Spider-Man, Spawn, X-Men and others for the top rankings. A series of highly successful characters cemented Valiant's place as an industry heavyweight, for example — Bloodshot #1 sold 900,000 copies, X-O Manowar #0 sold 850,000, Rai #9 sold 800,000, Secret Weapons #1 sold 650,000, Ninjak #1 sold 500,000, Second Life of Dr. Mirage sold 500,000, etc. At this point, Valiant characters had sold more than 50 million comic books.

Acclaim Comics

n 1994, Triumph Capital decided to exit their investment, and Valiant was sold to video game publisher Acclaim Entertainment.[1] Acclaim later discontinued publishing Valiant comic books and focused on developing Valiant action adventure video games targeting a younger demographic than Valiant comic book readers. From 1996 to 2002, Acclaim created a number of successful multi-platform released Valiant video games, such as the Shadowman franchise and Iron Man X-O Manowar in Heavy Metal (which featured Valiant's X-O Manowar alongside Marvel's Iron Man) with Valiant video game sales exceeded 8 million units and grossed over $300 million.
In 2003, Acclaim Entertainment's video game business was taking significant risks, including limited diversification. After losing a major sports video game license and without any new hits, Acclaim became financially insolvent and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2005.

Valiant Entertainment

In 2007, a group of investment professionals and media executives led by entrepreneurs Jason Kothari and Dinesh Shamdasani acquired all the rights to the Valiant Comics library from Acclaim Entertainment's estate and formed Valiant Entertainment (VE).[1]
Legal battles for the rights to Valiant trademarks occurred as a rival group, Valiant Intellectual Properties LLC (VIP), which had made trademark filings for some titles, due to a belief that Acclaim had failed to renew the trademarks correctly. This held up distribution of titles by Diamond Distribution. VE eventually won, with Jim Shooter continuing to write new stories for its hardcover reprints.[2] In late 2008, Jim Shooter was hired as Editor-In-Chief but only lasted until the summer of 2009. In October 2009, Valiant sued Jim Shooter for breach of contract, after he accepted a writing contract with Dark Horse's relaunch of the Gold Key characters, considered key to Valiant's publishing plan.[2]

In August 2011, Cuneo & Co. invested in Valiant Entertainment with Cuneo and Co.'s principals, Peter and Gavin Cuneo, joined Valiant's board as chairman and director, respectively.[1]

Valiant Entertainment will begin publishing new comics based on the Valiant Comics universe of characters in May 2012. [2] Starting with a new X-O Manowar series by writer Robert Venditti and artist Cary Nord. [3]

VEI revealed plans to release the world's first "talking" comic book cover, featuring QR code technology that allows the reader to use their smartphone to hear X-O Manowar speak.

Characters/features

There are approximately 1500 characters in the Valiant universe.

Gallery



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