Veteran Writers, Producers Form New Comic Book Shingle Dark Matter Publishing

Mon, October 1st, 2012 at 9:51am PDT

Comic Books
CBR News Team, Editor

Official Press Release

Tom Sheppard, writer, director and producer of the runaway hit show "Annoying Orange," "Steven Spielberg’s Pinky and the Brain" and numerous other projects, has partnered with producers Todd Moyer and Doug Masterson to announce the formation of a new comic book and young adult publishing company, Dark Matter Publishing LLC, based in Los Angeles. With Sheppard serving as publisher alongside partners Moyer and Masterson, the company intends to publish six original comic series in the first year and expand into young adult publishing in year two, with plans to publish up to six novels per year.

"I am so pleased to be able to work with a creator of the caliber of Tom Sheppard and am counting on his creative vision as publisher to help guide the company," Moyer said. "We’re proud to unite a rare combination of talented artists and executives who will bring a fresh approach to the comic publishing and transmedia business."

The company has announced its first four comic series, scheduled for publication in summer 2013. They are:

"Filthy, Stinking Heroes," created and written by Tom Sheppard. Ziggy and Doak, a pair of 30-ish, costumed Hollywood Boulevard street hustlers, unmask and usurp the lives of their real-life vigilante hero counterparts: the once great, now bloated sell-outs BLACK HAWK and his disgruntled sidekick, BISON BOY.  As the faux-heroes live out their wildest dreams -- cruising in the Hawkmobile, partying in the secret lair, and dating the real heroes' girlfriends -- the real, unmasked Black Hawk is unwittingly imprisoned, his DNA found at the scene of many of the crimes he actually thwarted.  Unable to prove his true identity, his bitterness grows until a powerful new super-villain is born, with one goal in mind: destroying the guys who stole his life. 

"Super Rad," created and written by best-selling novelist and screenwriter Andrea Portes. In this dystopian suburban society mega-conglomerate Freetek keeps the masses subdued with Happinex and mindless entertainment. But when teenager Charlotte Taft flat-lines and returns to life with psychic powers she uses her mind-reading abilities to seek vengeance on her enemies and, ultimately, threaten the benevolent fascism of the status quo. The feature film HICK, based on Portes’ novel and screenplay, was released on DVD August 12. Directed by Derick Martini, HICK features a terrific cast that includes Chloe Grace Moretz, Blake Lively, Eddie Redmayne, Juliette Lewis and Alec Baldwin. She’s just completed her second novel, "Bury This," and has an upcoming young adult novel in the works, "Stupidfaces."

"The Dark Voice," created and written by Chad Law (6 BULLETS, HERO WANTED, THE HIT LIST). Throughout time many murderers have claimed that it was a voice that made them kill. Most assume they are either crazy or lying. But the voice is real and now, a dead man must travel to an alternate universe and hunt down history's most infamous killers in order to silence the voice forever.

"Untrue Grit," created and written by Andrea Portes. Gun-toting, wisecracking teenager KODY WILKES, refuses to "know her place" as a girl, living back in the days of the Wild West. But when the entire town is held hostage during a bank heist, she is the only one left to thwart the bank robbers.

Three-time Emmy Award winner Tom Sheppard first gained notoriety as a writer on "Steven Spielberg’s Pinky and the Brain." He wrote the screenplay for New Line’s live-action feature THE NEW ADVENTURES OF PINOCCHIO starring Martin Landau. He wrote and directed the independent feature WOULD I LIE TO YOU? Other recent projects include Adult Swim’s "Robot Chicken," "Green Lantern" and "Back at the Barnyard," as well as the re-launch of Warner Bros. "Looney Tunes." Sheppard is the co-creator, executive producer, director and show runner on Cartoon Network’s "The Annoying Orange," based on the wildly popular YouTube phenomenon. Tom is currently working with legendary producer/director George Lucas and the creators of "Robot Chicken" on the upcoming Lucasfilm TV series, "Star Wars: Detours."

Todd Moyer knows a thing or two about the lucrative and creative crossover from comics to filmed entertainment, having worked at Dark Horse Entertainment seven years, setting up numerous comic properties at studios including THE MASK, TIMECOP, VIRUS, BARB WIRE, MYSTERYMEN, and ALIEN VS. PREDATOR. He served as co-producer on VIRUS and TIMECOP as well as producer on BARB WIRE. He oversaw production of two Steve Seagal films at Warner Bros., FIRE DOWN BELOW and GLIMMERMAN. Under his own shingle, No Prisoners Productions, he produced WING COMMANDER (Matthew Lillard and Freddie Prinze Jr.) and GEORGE AND THE DRAGON (Michael Clarke Duncan). Recent projects include the just-completed SQUATTERS and the upcoming feature DREAMT.

Doug Masterson has decades of diverse practical experience in industries ranging from production to logistics, education to apparel. Masterson served as producer on Sheppard’s WOULD I LIE TO YOU? In ten years with the famed live event logistics company Rock-It Cargo, he served in numerous positions from VP Sales and Marketing to President and COO, and also started an air charter division, Rock-It Air Charter. He consulted to a live event production company and worked with a tutoring company. Most recently he served as CEO of another international transportation logistics outfit, Shockwave Cargo. 

TAGS:  annoying orange, tom sheppard, todd moyer, doug masterson, dark matter publishing

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