CrossGen clarifies Waid's position

Wed, November 14th, 2001 at 12:00am PST

Comic Books
Jonah Weiland, Executive Producer/Publisher

[CrossGen Comics]Following on the heels of the CBR News report filed yesterday that Mark Waid will no longer be working exclusively for CrossGen Comics, the publisher today issued a release clarifying his position for the long term and announcing a variety of other moves within the company.

Specifically adressing Mark Waid's work for the company, CrossGen announced they have signed Waid to an additional long-term deal to write "Ruse" for a lengthy, but unspecified term. This new contract also releases him from his exclusivity with the company in order to allow him to complete the six-issue run of his former Gorilla Comic title, "Empire," according to the release.

The full text of the press release follows which includes details of upcoming work from Chuck Dixon and George Pérez.

TAMPA, FL., November 14, 2001 - Mark Waid will be writing Ruse for at least

the next several years, Chuck Dixon will write three titles, while George

Pérez has announced he will get back to penciling a monthly book again as

soon as he is finished with his JLA/Avengers project.

As a result of the stellar launch of CrossGen's new title, Ruse, CrossGen

has signed Mark Waid to an additional long-term deal to write Ruse for at

least the next several years, but will release him from his exclusivity to

CrossGen in order to allow him to complete a promised six-issue run of his

former Gorilla title Empire. In addition, Chuck Dixon has called dibs on

picking up the writing chores for both Sigil and Crux, as well as a new

untitled monthly to begin next summer.

Waid will not continue working in the CrossGen studio, but rather, will work

from home and visit the studio on a regular basis, much like George Pérez's

current situation.

The creative changes that will take affect soon include:

  • Mark Waid has signed an additional long-term contract with CrossGen to write Ruse for the next several years.

  • New CrossGen scribe Chuck Dixon, a writer with a thirst to

    tackle some science fiction work, will be taking over Sigil with issue #21.

    This shift was planned from the time CrossGen hired him, in order to take

    advantage of his expertise in writing action-oriented titles.

  • Chuck Dixon will also take over Crux with issue #13, which

    plays perfectly to Chuck's strengths in combining super-heroic action with

    the familial relationships portrayed in that title. With the appropriate

    foundation set for the characters and the world they live in, Chuck is ready

    to move the story forward.

  • Dixon has also begun work on a yet untitled monthly book

    that will act as a bookend to The Path, which is launching in February 2002.

    The Path's team is writer Ron Marz, penciler Bart Sears, inker Andy Smith

    and colorist Mike Atiyeh. Dixon's companion title will debut in May 2002,

    and has not been assigned an art team, yet.

  • Another new title will herald the return of George Pérez to

    monthly comics. George's health and vigor is greatly improved, and he has

    asked to draw a monthly title as soon as he is finished with JLA/Avengers.

    The title is tentatively scheduled for early 2003 to allow George to tackle

    all the preliminary designs and get at least several issues ahead of

    schedule.

"First, as brilliant a writer as Mark Waid is, he is not a man whose work

habits and creative style fit perfectly with a studio environment," said

CrossGen CEO and Publisher Mark Alessi. "He's a bit more of a maverick, and

produces his best work when he is able to work on his own terms. As we've

said in the past, the CrossGen studio isn't for everyone, and so we've

created a new situation that will ensure our fans will continue to enjoy

Ruse, which I believe is easily the best work Mark Waid has ever done."

Waid said he couldn't be happier with the arrangement.

"I still strongly believe in CrossGen's approach to this industry and I

intend to continue doing the best work I can with Ruse, which is a title I

enjoy writing immensely," Waid said. "I work best when I have more freedom

than a studio system can provide me, and this situation gives both CrossGen

and myself the best of both worlds. On my own, I'll be a better contributor

to the cause, and I'm also thankful that Mark Alessi understood my desire to

deliver Empire to the fans who have been waiting so patiently for it, and to

also pursue other interests over time that might not have existed within the

CrossGen structure."

Dixon said he was excited to bring his style of action to both Sigil and

Crux, and said he has a few surprises for regular readers of both titles.

"With Sigil, I want to really emphasize the fact that there is a war taking

place, and it is in full swing, with big guns and loads of space battles

that help to underscore the overall political conflict," Dixon said. "With

Crux, we hope to explore the relationship that Earth has with the Negation

and I look forward to working with [Negation writer] Tony Bedard. And

speaking of creators I'm itching to work with, I can't wait to get back with

Scot Eaton, with whom I've worked before. His stuff on Sigil is top-notch,

and Steve Epting is doing the best work of his career on Crux. I hope I can

keep up!"

Finally, Pérez said that he can't wait to start his new monthly title, and

that instead of taking a breather after JLA/Avengers, he intends to dive

right into his new title as soon as possible. In fact, George will be doing

some of his preliminary work to break up any JLA/Avengers creative fatigue

that he realizes will inevitably set in with such a single long-term

project.

"Everyone who has come to CrossGen has taken such incredible chances, but

I've always had somewhat of a safety net with regard to my career," Pérez

said. "I mean, CrossGen didn't make me relocate, they had me doing a

quarterly and they didn't make me give up a dream project like JLA/Avengers

in order to bring me on staff, so I want to come back after JLA/Avengers

full throttle. I want to show my commitment and appreciation for all that

CrossGen has done for me. I want to create my own touchstones within the

CrossGen Universe and have my own characters to draw, as well. The events of

September 11 got me thinking about things like my extended family at

CrossGen, and how much they've given up to make a bold statement about their

lives in this business. I felt very privileged to have a place in that

family, but I didn't feel like I had done as much as everyone else to earn

that place, so it's time for me to show my commitment. When I come back,

watch out!"

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