Innovative digital comics studio Madefire has announced a new partnership with publishers BOOM! Studios, IDW, Top Cow and iTV. The deal sees select titles adapted to Madefire's trademark Motion Book format, including "Transformers," "2 Guns" and "The Darkness." iTV's new story "The Trouble with Katie Rogers" created by Des Taylor will also be produced, available exclusively through the studio.
Madefire has previously produced original Motion Books offered through their iOS App, and have developed the Motion Book Tool allowing creators to develop motion books of their own.
"All the publishers we're working with are very forward-thinking and innovative in their approach to storytelling," Madefire's Editorial Director Ben Abernathy told CBR News when asked what attracted the publishers to the partnership.
"They have demonstrated a willingness to try new things in reaching new readers, both in print and digital, and I think they saw an opportunity with Madefire and our Motion Book format to push the envelope further and deliver an exciting and immersive experience to fans." Abernathy added he believes the Madefire iOS app and their exclusive partnership with deviantART can help the publishers reach a broader audience.
Abernathy also talked about the new challenge of giving previously published comics the Madefire treatment.
"The first challenge I'm looking forward to is blowing up any expectations people might have toward existing content and deliver the benchmark digital reading experience," he said. "It's tricky bringing something new to pre-published work, but I think fans are going to be really excited to see their favorite titles in a new way. For instance, the first episode of ‘My Little Pony' absolutely blew me away -- and made me an all-time hero to my daughter! -- and ‘Star Trek' #1 is just a blast! Titles like ‘The Darkness,' ‘Next Testament' and ‘Transformers' were meant to be read in this format. ‘2 Guns' was a title I wasn't very familiar with, but as soon as I read our preliminary builds I had to immediately read the rest of the series -- it's really great stuff.
"And I can't say enough about what Des Taylor's doing with ‘The Trouble with Katie Rogers,'" Abernathy continued. "Between an engaging story and lead character, gorgeous art and terrific building and utilization of music, I think he's going to have a lot of eyes on his heroine.
"I'm thrilled about how these partnerships will continue to evolve what's possible with our Motion Book Tool and it's ability to create original stories and augment existing content," Abernathy concluded. "I think in very short order we'll see a larger adoption of the experience and with the Tool's ease of use and versatility, I'm excited to see what people are going to create using it."
Official Press Release
Groundbreaking. Innovative. Original. All these terms could be used to describe either the cutting-edge digital studio Madefire or their new partners: IDW, Top Cow, Boom! Studios, and iTV. In signing a new partnership, these trailblazing companies are going to be setting a new standard for digital storytelling in the 21st century.
"Madefire has created some amazing original motion books and animation tools," shared Jeff Webber, IDW's VP of Digital Publishing. "They've taken everything they've learned and developed over the past year and applied it to creating new experiences with some of our top comic brands. The motion book versions of Star Trek, My Little Pony and Transformers comics will reach a whole new audience."
The deal consists of IDW, Top Cow, and Boom! Studios bringing the trademark Motion Book experience to a select group of their most popular print titles—including Boom!'s Next Testament and 2 Guns and Top Cow's The Darkness—and releasing them through the acclaimed Madefire iOS app and on the web exclusively through deviantART. Taking existing print titles and creating a new, immersive digital reading experience will be a first for Madefire but it's a treatment they think fans will enjoy.
"A primary goal from Day One has been to work with the top publishers in the print and entertainment space toward adoption of the Motion Book experience," notes Madefire co-founder and CEO Ben Wolstenholme. "To launch with an elite group of publishers out the gate is tremendous and speaks volumes to their visionary approach to storytelling."
iTV will be testing the platform with an original, digital-first series by Des Taylor called The Trouble with Katie Rogers exclusively on Madefire.
"Ever since I bumped into the Madefire stand at San Diego Comic Con 2012, I haven't looked back! The Motion Book tool gave me the freedom to create Katie Rogers how I want the reader to experience it and I am seriously considering creating other titles in my portfolio on this platform." Raves Des Taylor, creator/writer/artist on Katie Rogers. "The only restriction is your mind."
Further information regarding release dates and additional titles to join the burgeoning line to come. For Motion Book demonstrations of each title, be sure to visit Madefire's booth (#4902,4904) at San Diego Comic Con July 17-21.
Founded in 2011 by Ben Wolstenholme, Liam Sharp and Eugene Walden, Madefire provides artists and writers a publishing solution for iOS and web reading allowing them to build their stories in an exciting new format called Motion Books. Madefire is backed by Toni Schneider at True Ventures, The CEO of Automattic makers of Wordpress, with angel investors including Sina Tamaddon, former Senior Vice President of Applications for Apple Inc--both of whom are on Madefire's Board of Advisors. The Advisory Board also includes industry leaders Mike McCue, CEO and Founder of Flipboard, Dave Gibbons, co-creator of Watchmen, the bestselling graphic novel of all time, and Bill Sienkiewicz, widely recognized as one of the greatest innovators of sequential art. For more information go to madefire.com.