Out of My Mind: Why Moving Beyond Comics Makes Sense for Valiant
Rumors began circulating about a major Sunday announcement early last week, and as you are all by now aware, Valiant Entertainment received a huge investment from DMG this past Sunday. DMG is a Chinese company which has invested in very successful movie franchises in the past including Iron Man, Transformers, Pirates of the Caribbean, and more. Most news outlets and fans have focused their attention on the fact that the funding is about developing films, and while this is certainly a big impetus, there is much more to the news than movies – but let’s start there.
Rumors have been circulating of Valiant movies for some years now. A Bloodshot film seems to high on the priority list and has been attached to Sony (see image) for some time now, with both Archer and Armstrong, and Shadowman also in the works. With the DMG investment, all these, and other projects can now move forward with the proper amount of financing necessary to make them happen.
It really should come as no surprise that Valiant would want to branch out into other media. As is obvious from some of the comments in the various groups and message boards on the web, fans want more of the characters we all love. I remember picking up my first Valiant book in the early 90s (X-O Manowar #0) and immediately thinking how amazing the story would translate into a live action, no-holds barred sci-fi movie. If you’re reading any of the other titles, it should be obvious to you as well that these books are begging to be brought into other media from television, film, and beyond. The important thing to remember, is that this news isn’t just about film and tv, it’s about the continued growth and expansion of Valiant as a company.
The DMG/Valiant deal is great for fans worldwide in that it will allow us to see our favorite characters in other media, but it is great for Valiant in that it provides it with a new revenue stream. There’s no doubt that every book Valiant is putting out is high quality as some of the best and brightest creators in the industry are involved, and yet, on any given month, Valiant books only sell between 5000-10000 units (new #1 issues aside of course). Granted, the comic book industry isn’t as large as it once was, and even at these numbers Valiant is beating out many competitors in sales and unit share, but there needs to be a way to expand that readership. What better way than movies?
There is no doubt that Marvel has been doing a stellar job with their movie franchises, planning 10-15 years ahead and creating a cohesive movie universe. How this has translated into book sales is probably a topic for another column, but there are no doubt new fans being made that have picked up some of the books. Yet, the important thing to remember is that this has helped Marvel step out from some very tough times and made the company a household name even among the non comic book reading masses, which is of course, much larger than those who partake in the hobby. This is an important lesson to remember when considering the recent news. Many of us remember the sale of Valiant properties to Acclaim and then the rapid downfall of those franchises into non-existence, and the “dark years” until VEI’s resurrection.
Of course, let’s not forget the largely untapped market in China and other Asian nations where the mindshare of Marvel and DC properties is much lower than what has been ingrained in us here in the West. To these markets, Valiant characters may seem even more excitement, in large part due to the large number of Asian characters and themes present in the current Valiant lineup.
Imagine how differently things could have played out in the 90s and early 2000s had different steps been taken? Valiant CEO, Dinesh Shamdasani was a fan in those days and he has seen how various decisions have steered the company in both good and bad directions. For those of you who have been there as well, there should be no doubt that the slow and steady mentality which is so deeply ingrained in everyone at Valiant Entertainment is the right direction, and that the funding should not be seen as simply a play into making movies, but a play into the continued growth and well-being of the company.
- China’s DMG and Valiant Entertainment to expand superhero universe – Deadline
- Valiant Entertainment announces nine figure funding for movie division – Hollywood Reporter
- DC and Marvel beware, Valiant is to make films – The New York Times
- DMG and Valiant to bring largest independent superhero universe to movie theaters worldwide – Valiant Universe
Originally from ValiantCentral.com