Sunday night IDW's Vice-President of Sales and Marketing Beau Smith announced he'd be leaving the publisher to concentrate on writing. He did so with a rather unique press release, which we've reprintied below.
Official Press Release
Ceredo, WV (January 31, 2005) Amid numerous lurid industry rumors of scandal, the truth has finally come in an official announcement. Vice-President of Sales and Marketing, Beau Smith, will be leaving IDW Publishing as of February 1, 2005.
Smith has been with Idea + Design Works's IDW Publishing division since July 2001, when he stuck his boots into the stirrups as VP of Sales and Marketing and began a very successful ride. Before that, Beau, a 17-year comics marketing professional, had served as VP of Marketing for Eclipse Comics, Image Comics, Todd McFarlane Productions and McFarlane Toys. "Beau has always been an idol-maker and empire-builder. His track record speaks for itself… that is, when Beau will let it get a word in edge-wise," commented IDW Publishing's Editor-In-Chief, Chris Ryall.
Beau has also been a noted writer and creator for 17 years and has written over 100 books. His resume includes such comics as Batman/Wildcat, Catwoman/Wildcat, Guy Gardner: Warrior, Star Wars, The Tenth, The Black Terror, Spawn, Wolverine/Shi, as well as his own creator-owned projects such as Wynonna Earp, Parts Unknown, Primate, Maximum Jack and Cobb. Smith's self-proclaimed manly talents have also been involved with writing video games for Capcom, like Maximo: Army Of Zin. He's also contributed various film dialogue work in B-movies that you would never admit you watched.
Smith writes one of the most manly and popular pop culture opinion columns on the Internet, Busted Knuckles. It's a weekly column that is testosterone-filled and as macho as jock itch. Almost as irritating, as well.
As far as future plans, Smith had this to say-"I'm a free agent. Freelance. A grand opportunity waitin' to happen… I'm unemployed. I'll be gettin' fitted for my blue vest at Wal-Mart this afternoon. It's gonna be just like the movie The Magnificent Seven, only without the other six guys and the magnificent part," Smith grumbled as he cut up his IDW credit card.
For weeks, there have been countless rumors of Smith being let go because of sex parties in the office, drunken brawls and destruction of IDW office equipment all on company time, not to mention cattle being stampeded through the office hallways. Then it was recalled that Smith worked out of his own ranch in West Virginia. All charges have been dropped.
"I'm gonna become some other publisher's freelance nightmare. I'm gonna dive fist-first into more comic book writing. I'm backed by over 17 years of marketing skills as well as havin' one of the best direct market retailer relationships in comics. Not braggin', but I have the biggest advantage goin' in comics with my experience in business and on the creative end. You can count on one hand the enemies I've made in comics, and most of them are dead anyway." Smith added when we couldn't find a way to shut him up.
Upon learning that Beau Smith was free to build new empires and catapult new stars into the comic books skies here are what a few talented people in the industry REALLY had to say:
"Beau's been working? And where? And...for how long? I thought he and that young guy Ted Adams were at Eclipse Comics? And...you sobered me up to tell me this?!!"-Flint Henry. Artist. Iron Ghost. GrimJack. LawDog.
"This is for those of you who haven't read Guy Gardner: Warrior, Parts Unknown or Wynonna Earp. Beau Smith is for real. Two-fisted, knock-you-out-of-the-building, tough-guy action. Get with the program, or suffer the consequences."-Dwayne Turner, Artist-The Authority. Wolverine.
"IDW's loss is Chick-Fil-A's gain, no question. Beau's manly charm, manly wit, and manly file folders full of very unmanly blackmail photographs have always made our world a more exciting, vibrant, and costly place to live, and I know I speak for most of the Mexican authorities when I say "I hope we haven't seen the last of you, Mr. Smith."-Mark Waid, Writer-Legion Of Super-heroes. Fantastic Four.
"This is one hell of a deal for the comics industry! To actually have the chance to employ the talents of the most sought-out P.R. and Marketing man in comics and entertainment... but none compares to this Beau's hard-nosed and thought-provoking prose once again unleashed on the comic racks. I'm already making plans and make mine a mug of Beau! –Billy Tucci, Creator of Shi
"This is good news and bad news. As effective as Beau is as a spokesman for the industry, he's always been a writer in my mind first and foremost. Now I gotta muscle my way to the front of the line to work with him. Let's not forget Maximum Jack. Or a cool Wynnona Earp cover, at least!"-Scot Eaton, Artist-Captain America. Spider-Man. Maximum Jack.
"I like Beau... and you should too."-Adam Kubert. Artist.-Wolverine. X-Men.
"I'm very sorry to see Beau leave IDW Publishing but I'm happy to know that it means I'll be able to read more comics by him. Beau's a terrific writer and I think it's great that he's going to focus more energy on his freelance career," said IDW's Publisher, Ted Adams
Through the powers of mental telepathy and other fictitious means, here are what others in the comic book industry might have said (If they were really asked):
"I'll have my response to you next month, promise! Or the one after that. Maybe July. But it's coming, really!"-Rob Liefeld *
"Beau, call me, I'd love to have you come back to work here and... sorry, I can't even type that with a straight face."-Todd McFarlane *
"Who's Beau Smith again?"-Ted Adams
"Rip off my legacy, will you? I'll see you sooner or later, amigo…"-The Ghost of Wyatt Earp
"I had the idea to leave a company first. Beau stole it from me!"-John Byrne *
"Beau is a girl's name. What kinda self-professed 'real man' calls hisself 'Beau'? Besides, I carried your dead butt through most of those books we wrote."-Chuck Dixon
"My Guy Gardner can kick your Guy Gardner's ass. And stay off my message boards!"-Geoff Johns *
"Beau, the terms of the restraining order say that you're no longer allowed to e-mail me."-Gail Simone *
"The party you are trying to reach is no longer at this number Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz."-Pat Lee *
"You're too short to hire. That and I don't have the power to hire you any longer."-Jim Shooter *
"Don't call me, I'll call you."-Paul Levitz-DC Comics *
"Don't call me, I'll call you."-Joe Quesada-Marvel Comics *
"Don't call me, I'll call you."-Mike Richardson-Dark Horse Comics *
"Beau, it could be worse."-Mikah Wright *
"I told everyone you were just helping me over the fence that time."-Anonymous West Virginia Farm Animal. *
Those wishing to inform the authorities or contact Beau directly can now reach him directly at:
The Flying Fist Ranch
P.O. Box 706
Ceredo, WV. 25507
Note: * means they really didn't say it. (Satire/Joke….really! No Lawyers..Please…I have no money.)