Legal | A federal judge has dismissed two claims by comics creator Jason Barnes, aka Jazan Wild, against songwriter Andreas Carlsson but will two others to move forward in a lawsuit over a graphic novel biography. The two signed a deal in 2007 for Dandy: Welcome to a Dandyworld, with Carlsson allegedly retaining the copyrights and Barnes receiving pay plus a percentage of book sales and a cut from any merchandising and movie deals. Carlsson filed suit three years later after Barnes posted Dandyworld online, a move the artist answered with a countersuit claiming, among other things, copyright infringement, bad faith and breach of contract because the songwriter published a bestselling novel in Sweden "inspired by a graphic novel created by Andreas Carlsson and Jazan Wild." Barnes, who claims he never received residuals from the sales of the novel, asked a federal judge to determine copyright ownership. U.S. District Judge Christina Snyder refused to enter summary judgment about Barnes' copyright, saying ownership will rest on whether he was an independent contractor of Carlsson's employee, and dismissed the artists' claims of negligent representation and fraudulent inducement. However, Carlsson will have to face accusations of breach of contract and bad faith.
If the name Jason Barnes, or Jazan Wild, seems familiar, it's because two years ago he sued NBC and producer Tim Kring for $60 million, claiming elements from the third season of Heroes were stolen from his 2005-2006 comic series Jazan Wild's Carnival of Souls. [Courthouse News Service]
Awards | Foreword, a magazine that publishes reviews of independently published books, announced its Book of the Year Awards during the American Library Association midsummer meeting this past weekend. Two books from Archaia, Jim Henson's Tale of Sand and Royden Lepp's Rust, took the gold and silver medals, while Barbara Hambly's Anne Steelyard took the bronze and the true-life adventure story Lost Trail got honorable mention. [Book of the Year Awards]
Digital comics | Erica Friedman pens a thoughtful essay on the question of the content versus the container, how those containers inevitably change over the years, and her dream digital comics system, which would allow her to access all her content anytime from any device: "I no longer need to buy the containers for content, when I can access that content anywhere, any time. I don't own the content, but then, I never did. I just owned the containers and my thoughts about the content...and the two things that the content conferred upon me - portability and ability to share - are replicated by this new system." [Okazu]
Creators | Chef Anthony Bourdain and his collaborators Langdon Foss and Joel Rose discuss their new action comic Get Jiro, about a sushi chef who takes it really badly when diners order California rolls. [San Jose Mercury News]
Creators | Fred Van Lente discusses his work on the upcoming Valiant title Archer & Armstrong. [Weekly Crisis]
Graphic novels | Nathan Max takes a look at a graphic novel created by the Navy to prepare corpsmen for the emotional demands of deployment. [UTSanDiego.com]
Retailing | The owners of Midgard Comics in Charleston, Illinois, talk about their client base, the loyalty of comics fans and the effect of movies on sales (not much, from their perspective). [The Daily Eastern News]