"Death, Jr." Comes To Life In April from Image

Official Press Release

BERKELEY, CA – 25 JANUARY, 2005 – What do you do if your father is responsible for every death in the history of the world, and you're just starting middle school? You try to keep a low profile, mind your own business, and do your best to avoid destroying your hometown and everyone in it.

Beginning this April, Courtney Crumrin creator and Gloomcookie artist Ted Naifeh and writer Gary Whitta (Duke Nukem Forever, Reaper) will chronicle the adventures of the Grim Reaper's only child in DEATH, JR., a bi-monthly miniseries debuting from Image Comics in association with Backbone Entertainment.

DEATH, JR. enjoys being a kid, hanging with his friends, and generally staying out of trouble. All of that changes when he and his friends accidentally unleash an ancient evil into the world. From there it's up to DJ and his pals to clean up the mess before his dad finds out. After all, no one wants to tangle with the Grim Reaper on a bad day.

Part of the appeal of the book is the quirky cast of friends: Pandora, a little goth girl; Smith & Weston, conjoined twins; Stigmartha, a girl who bleeds when she gets nervous; and The Seep, an armless, legless, foreign exchange student in a jar.

"We created a pretty huge world for Death, Jr, only a small part of which you get to see in the game," says Backbone CEO Jon Goldman. "Gary and Ted have done a fantastic job creating an awesome comic, and enabling people to get in and experience the world of Death, Jr in a really exciting way."

DEATH, JR. is currently in development as an exclusive title for the upcoming Sony PSP handheld entertainment system, which will also be released in spring 2005. Along with the comic book and videogame, a feature film based on the character is in preproduction with Media 8 Entertainment.

"We couldn't be more excited to have Death, Jr. published by our favorite comic book publisher," adds Andrew Ayre, President of Backbone Entertainment.

For its part, Image is excited to be showcasing the renowned skills of Naifeh and Whitta.

"Ted is a guy everyone should know by now, and we couldn't be happier to be highlighting his talent with a book like this," says Image Comics Executive Director Eric Stephenson. "If people aren't aware of the great work he's been doing, this book should open their eyes. He and Gary have put together a book that will appeal to anyone who appreciates dark humor and beautiful comics."

The first story arc will encompass three full-color, 48-page, prestige format books. DEATH JR. #1 is solicited in the February issue of Diamond PREVIEWS, and will hit shelves this April.

Image Comics is a comics and graphic novels publisher formed in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Since that time, Image has gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. There are currently four partners in Image Comics (Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino), and Image is currently divided into three major houses (Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions and Image Central). Image comics and graphic novels cover nearly every genre, sub-genre and style imaginable, offering science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today.

Visit www.imagecomics.com for more information.

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