Publishing | Variety speaks with Madrigall President Antoine Gallimard about how the French publishing giant and its holdings (Gallimard, Casterman, Flammarion and Futuropolis, among them) handle the film rights to their many graphic novels, and the popularity of comics as source material: “I think that the French publishing and film industries feed on, complement, and ultimately do help each other. The number of films adapted from books that are produced every year in France is eloquent testimony to this.” Noting that, “In recent years, there’s a real feeding-frenzy for graphic novels, comic books,” Gaillimard says, “Comedy, in all its variants, is the most popular of adapted materials.” [Variety]
Legal | An Algerian judge has made a preliminary recommendation of 18 months’ imprisonment for cartoonist Djamel Ghanem for drawing a cartoon, which was never published, that government officials deemed offensive. In an odd twist, Ghanem was sued by his own newspaper, La Voix de l’Oranie, which tends to favor the current administration, and as a result, he has been blackballed by the Algerian media. The cartoon is critical of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s bid for a fourth term but doesn’t even depict the president — it shows two people in conversation, comparing the fourth term to baby diapers — Ghanem said the point was that Algerians were treated like children. Pressed by the district attorney to admit the cartoon was insulting to the Bouteflika, Ghanem insisted that wasn’t his intention. [Global Voices Online]
Creators | Al Jaffee, who at age 92 is still drawing the Fold-Ins for MAD Magazine, explains how the first one came about (he thought it would be a one-shot gag) and how he makes them each month, and, in a video, shows off the one Fold-In MAD wouldn’t run. [Yahoo! News]
Creators | It’s official: Indian cartoonist Aseem Trivedi, who was briefly imprisoned on sedition charges stemming from one of his cartoons in 2012, is running for parliament. During last year’s assembly elections, Trivedi launched a campaign called Occupy Polling Booths, which aimed to educate voters about the candidates’ criminal backgrounds. [The Indian Express]
Creators | New Yorker cartoonist Ed Koren, who was recently named Vermont’s Cartoonist Laureate, talks about his work, how he ended up in Brookfield, Vermont, where he serves on the local volunteer fire department, and how the state inspires his work: “There’s something always new, or quirky or nutty or outrageous… To me, it never ends, and it’s great for that.” [VTDigger]
Creators | Tom Spurgeon interviews writer Joe Casey at great length about his work, working for hire, how the industry has changed, and a host of other issues, as well as Sex, Butcher Baker and his Big Two work. [The Comics Reporter]
Creators | Paul Gravett interviews the Hungarian creator András Baranyai about his work and the evolution of the Hungarian comics scene in recent years. [Paul Gravett]
Creators | Chris Ecker has found a new spin on digital publishing: He’s re-releasing his comic strip The Knight Watchman on Twitter. [The Daily Herald]
Conventions | I reported on the presence of children’s comics — and children! — at the Angoulême International Comics Festival. [Publishers Weekly]
Conventions | Mike Stucka interviews a cross-section of attendees at the Warner Robins Comic Con in Warner Robins, Georgia, including a cosplaying mom and artist Don Hillsman II. [The Telegraph]
Comics | Andy Smith rounds up 15 comics that have #1 issues in February. [Creative Loafing Charlotte]
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