A Public Service Announcement! ;)

A Public Service Announcement! ;)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Another Company Entering the Children's GN Market

Thanks to Lou Novacheck for this forward from IDW:

Signs Distribution Agreement with Renowned UK Children's Publishing Firm; Pacts With Top Hollywood Screenwriters To Create Children's Books

(San Diego, CA and Newark, NJ; January 10, 2008) -- In a precedent-setting move, IDW Publishing, a division of IDT Internet Mobile Group and an established leader in the comic book and graphic novel arena, is launching a children's division called Jonas Publishing and a new imprint, Worthwhile Books. The move will allow IDW Publishing to expand its library of successful print titles, which to date has been particularly focused in the horror, action, and sci-fi genres, such as 30 Days of Night and The Transformers. To launch the imprint, IDW Publishing has inked a significant agreement with a renowned UK children's publisher and is striking deals with top Hollywood writers to create children's books.

Worthwhile Books has finalized a first-look arrangement with UK children's publisher Meadowside Books (http://www.meadowsidebooks.com/), known for its unique character-driven picture books for young readers. Worthwhile will be the exclusive U.S. publisher of selected Meadowside titles and will retain domestic film and television rights on those properties. The first Meadowside Books title in the deal, Michael Recycle, by Ellie Bethel, follows the escapades of a "green-caped" environmental hero and will be released in March by Worthwhile Books. Worthwhile expects to issue approximately 10 Meadowside titles over the course of the first year, including William's Dinosaurs, by Alan Baker, which tells the tale of a little boy who finds more than trees in the dark woods near his home.

Worthwhile's Hollywood outreach is tapping into the top ranks of movie and television writing talent to bring original literary stories to the young reading audience. The collective credits of the entertainment writers include some of the industry's most successful television series and movies. These writers include:

· David N. Weiss, whose writing credits include Shrek 2, Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius and both Rugrats movies
· David Sacks, a writer/producer on The Simpsons, producer on Malcolm in the Middle, and writer on 3rd Rock from the Sun
· Dava Savel, an Emmy Award- winning comedy writer with credits on shows such as Grace Under Fire and Will & Grace, in addition to being an executive producer on the children's program That's So Raven
· David Steinberg, whose producing credits include Meet the Robinsons, Home on the Range and Cats Don't Dance
· Robert Kurtz, who wrote for the movie Everyone's Hero and has written for such shows as Boy Meets World and Grace Under Fire

"Our growth strategy calls for continued expansion into other areas of the entertainment sector," said Ted Adams, IDW co-founder and president. "Creating and controlling successful
children's properties helps us in those endeavors. Meadowside's books are playful, empowering, smart and exciting and the artwork is simply breathtaking. These are children's picture stories in the classic tradition with a central character that is relatable to today's kids."

In speaking of the outreach to Hollywood writers, Robert Kurtz, vice-president and creative director at Worthwhile Books, said "Every writer I know who works in television or movies has a children's story inside him or her that they've wanted to tell for years but for a variety of reasons never were able to get out into the marketplace. We want writers to think of Worthwhile Books as the one-stop destination for that kind of project. It is designed to be a writer-driven company and we think that will be very attractive to these talented artists."

ABOUT IDW PUBLISHING:Idea and Design Works, LLC, (DBA IDW Publishing) is a division of IDT Internet Mobile Group (IIMG). An established leader in the comic book and graphic novel marketplace, particularly in the horror, action, and sci-fi genres, IDW Publishing also owns Jonas Publishing and its children's imprint, Worthwhile Books. IDW lists some of the most successful and hottest print titles in the industry in its portfolio, including: television's #1 prime time series CSI: Crime Scene Investigation; Sony's Underworld; Paramount's Star Trek; Fox's 24 and Angel, and Hasbro's The Transformers. The feature film version of IDW Publishing's graphic novel, 30 Days of Night, recently topped the box office when it premiered in October. The company also works with foreign licensing agents to sell their comics around the world, with titles being published in multiple languages and crossing dozens of regions.

ABOUT IDT INTERNET MOBILE GROUP:IDT Internet Mobile Group (IIMG), a division of the Fortune 1000 telecommunications firm IDT Corporation (NYSE: IDT, IDT.C), is a leader in the development, management and growth of cross-platform consumer entertainment, distribution and financial services. From providing mobile content to consumers in over 200 countries through the mobile content portal Zedge ( http://www.zedge.net/) to the creation, development and distribution of top graphic novels through IDW Publishing, and providing cash remittance services via mobile phones to millions of people living abroad, IIMG is dedicated to turning innovative ideas and companies into products and services that span various industries.
In this press release, all statements that are not purely about historical facts, including, but not limited to, those with the words "believe," "anticipate," "expect," "plan," "intend," "estimate," "target" and similar expressions, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All forward-looking statements and risk factors included in this document are made as of the date hereof, based on information available to IDT as of the date thereof, and IDT assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements or risk factors.

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