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Sweeping Changes Happening At DC Comics

Matt McGloin Posted: 01/23/2019 - 22:15 COMMENT
Sweeping Changes Happening At DC Comics

It's being reported that DC Comics is undergoing major changes as the company is said to be restructuring, with meetings having been held earlier today.

According to Bleeding Cool, a rumor surfaced that Dan DiDio was out as DC Comics co-publisher, but they have since been told DiDio is still publisher along with Jim Lee.

The article does claim a major restructuring is still going on at the DC Burbank offices that includes a new managerial team. It's said John Cunningham, SVP Sales Trade Marketing, and Mark Chiarello, Senior Art Director, left the DC offices early today and were not going to be attending the meetings. The two are said to be no longer a part of DC along with Eddie Scannell, VP Consumer Marketing.

It's further said there have also been layoffs at the Warner Bros Consumer Product division, which looks to relate to the changes at DC Comics. The report offers, "This is not a DC thing, but this is how things affect DC Comics."

Additional changes at DC include shifts at Vertigo and a streamlining of the editorial process. It's further said any additional changes to editorial won't happen until the Summer.

As noted, the news of the restructuring follows the sale of Warner Bros. to AT&T, both Geoff Johns and Diane Nelson stepping down as co-presidents of DC Entertainment, Jim Lee holding the dual role of co-publisher and chief creative officer, and Pamela Lifford being made the new President of DC Comics (President, Warner Bros. Global Brands and Experiences, with responsibility for Warner Bros. Consumer Products, DC, Themed Entertainment and a new Global Franchise team).

Warner Bros. is expected to officially announce the changes in the coming days.

Update: THR reports DC is laying off 3 percent of its workforce. According to the report, it is believed that seven employees, around three percent of DC's 240-person workforce, have been impacted. It's also reported:

The company has been organized into three distinct areas as of Wednesday's news: Editorial, which will continue to be overseen by editor-in-chief Bob Harras; Production & Manufacturing, which remains under the purview of senior vp manufacturing and operations Alison Gill; and the newly created Publishing Support Services, which will handle sales, marketing and promotion for DC product and be handled by longtime DC veteran Hank Kanalz as senior vp publishing strategy & support services.

DC Collectibles, the merchandising arm of the company, will be moved under Warner Bros. Consumer Products' Toy team. 

This move comes on the same day as a reorganization of Warner Bros. Consumer Products, in which 10 percent of staff will be laid off, sources say.

Here is the memo sent out by Pamela Lifford: 

Today has been a challenging day. We have made organizational changes across DC that we believe will help to strengthen and evolve the division for future success. With these changes come difficult decisions which we take very seriously.

We recognize and appreciate that all of our employees have made considerable contributions to our business and that it is difficult to lose colleagues, many of whom have been here for a long time and have made an important impact on DC. We thank them for their hard work and dedication to DC. As always, we are committed to taking care of our employees and will be as thoughtful as possible with those who are impacted by these changes.

Together with Dan and Jim, and the executive team, we have spent time assessing DC’s business, as well as the comic book publishing landscape. DC is going back to its roots of delivering epic stories with our world-class characters, stories and brands. Being a premier house of storytelling will never go out of style and we intend to ultimately super-serve our existing fans, while providing new compelling content that engages and excites even more fans around the globe. Rest assured, the direct market will remain at the heart of our business – and will continue to be one of our greatest strengths.

The new streamlined structure is focused on creating, delivering and supporting a robust publishing operation that will allow DC to be nimble, navigate an industry in change, and thrive. As we communicated today, we are forming three distinct work streams – Editorial, Production & Manufacturing and Publishing Support Services.

•  Editorial will continue to be run by Bob Harras, SVP & Editor-In-Chief, who will now also be responsible for new initiatives and global publishing, editorial scheduling, and art direction

•  Production & Manufacturing will continue to be run by Alison Gill, SVP Manufacturing & Operations

•  Publishing Support Services is a new business unit consisting of all departments that support the sales, marketing and promotion of our books, and this will be run by Hank Kanalz who is taking on additional responsibilities as SVP Publishing Strategy & Support Services As a result – DC Collectibles and its team will be part of the Consumer Products Toy team moving forward.

We recognize there are other groups across DC who are not fully dedicated to supporting the publishing business and, therefore, are not directly addressed in today’s news. As The Global Brands & Experiences structure continues to develop, I look forward to sharing more with you as that evolves.

Many of you will have questions and in the coming days you will receive more information from Bob, Alison and Hank about their teams. Together with Dan and Jim, I will be hosting Town Hall meetings Thursday on the individual floors to discuss these changes and provide more insight. 

Thank you again for your support, hard work and loyalty to DC. Each of you are incredibly valued and I look forward to seeing you tomorrow afternoon where I will do my best to answer any questions.

Pam

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