Wizard World, Inc. (OTCBB: WIZD) and Skybound, Robert Kirkman’s imprint at Image Comics, today announced “KISS” album cover artist Ken Kelly has drawn the 13th in a yearlong series of Limited Edition Exclusive Variant Covers of The Walking Dead #1 comic, to be provided free to all full-price attendees at Wizard World Comic Con Richmond, July 31 – Aug. 2. Skybound’s The Walking Dead created by Kirkman, the groundbreaking, Eisner Award winning comic book series, continues to captivate audiences worldwide.
The exclusive The Walking Dead #1 edition will be produced in extremely limited quantities and is available at registration to fans at the Greater Richmond Convention Center only while supplies last. VIP attendees will receive an additional black & white sketch version of the comic.
Kelly was naturally talented as a child and was practically born with pencil in his hand. As his style developed in later years, he decided to join the Marines. While stationed in Cuba, he drew all the illustrations for the U.S. magazine “The Gitmo Gazette”. After serving four years in the Marines, Ken Kelly accepted an offer to train under Frank Frazetta. Throughout a career spanning over 40 years, Ken Kelly has achieved an international reputation as one of a handful of master painters of sword and sorcery/heroic fantasy.
Ken got his start doing covers for “Famous Monsters of Filmland” magazines, but it wasn’t until he painted both the “Destroyer” and “LoveGun” covers for KISS that he became noticed around the globe. Since then he has since painted a tremendous amount of book covers (his “Conan” covers being some of his most beloved works), artwork for toy companies such as Mattel (He-Man) and Mego (Micronauts). Kelly currently is under contract with Gene Simmons of the heavy metal band KISS, Kelly paints guitars exclusively for Simmons.
The artists for future books will be announced as they are selected. A similar series in 2013 featuring exclusives of The Walking Dead #1 proved to be wildly popular with fans. The full schedule of 2015-16 Wizard World shows is available at http://www.wizardworld.com/wizcon.html.
The Wizard World Comic Con Richmond celebrity roster includes “The Walking Dead” star Michael Cudlitz (“Sgt. Abraham Ford”). Other stars attending include William Shatner (“Star Trek,” “Boston Legal”), Billie Piper (“Doctor Who”), Billy Dee Williams ( Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Brian’s Song), Billy Boyd (The Lord of the Rings, Master and Commander; The Far Side of the World ), Sean Astin ( The Lord of the Rings, The Goonies), WWE® Diva Paige™, Michael Cudlitz (“The Walking Dead,” “Southland”), Kristin Bauer (“True Blood,” “Once Upon a Time”) and Drea de Matteo (“Sons of Anarchy,” “The Sopranos”) and many others.
In addition to Kelly, Artist Alley in Richmond will feature Mike Grell (“Green Arrow,” “Action Comics”), Mike Zeck (“Spider-Man,” “Punisher”), Michael Golden (“Spider-Man,” “Daredevil”), James O’Barr (creator, “The Crow”), Renee Witterstaetter (“She Hulk,” “Avengers”), Clinton Hobart (Disney fine artist), Marv Wolfman (“DCU Online,” “Crisis on Infinite Earths”), Danny Fingeroth (group editor, “Spider-Man” franchise) and more.
Wizard World Comic Con events bring together thousands of fans of all ages to celebrate the best in pop-fi, pop culture, movies, graphic novels, cosplay, comics, television, sci-fi, toys, video gaming, gaming, original art, collectibles, contests and more. The 14th of 26 events currently scheduled on the 2015 Wizard World calendar, Richmond show hours are Friday, July 31, 3-8 p.m.; Saturday, August 1, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sunday, August 2, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
For more on the 2015 Wizard World Comic Con Richmond, visit http://www.wizardworld.com/home-richmond.html .
About Robert Kirkman
Robert Kirkman is the creator of many popular comic books, including the Eisner Award-winning The Walking Dead, long-running Invincible, all-ages Super Dinosaur , and the new exorcism comic, Outcast which was released in June 2014 and recently received a pilot pickup for CINEMAX with Fox International.
Since entering the comics scene with his self-published cult-hit Battle Pope in 2000, the Kentucky native has risen to fame as one of the most successful names in comics and entertainment. In 2008, Kirkman became a partner at Image Comics, and in 2010, he opened Skybound, his own imprint at Image, which publishes his titles as well as other original work
That same year, Kirkman continued to expand his presence in the entertainment industry, becoming a creator, executive producer and writer on The Walking Dead television show.
The show is in production on its fifth season and has become the highest-rated basic cable drama of all time. To date The Walking Dead is the #1 on television among the coveted 18-49 demo.
Kirkman is also slated to executive produce AMC’s upcoming The Walking Dead companion series.
Under the Skybound Entertainment umbrella Kirkman wrapped production on his first feature film, Air, starring The Walking Dead ’s Norman Reedus and Academy Award-nominated actor Djimon Hounsou.
About Skybound Entertainment
Since opening its doors in 2010, Skybound Entertainment has grown into a multiplatform entertainment company. Skybound CEO Robert Kirkman is creator of the award-winning The Walking Dead comic book series, the inspiration for the hit TV show of the same name where he serves as creator and executive producer. To date The Walking Dead is the #1 on television among the coveted 18-49 demo.
Skybound Entertainment and Kirkman just wrapped production on their first feature film, Air, starring The Walking Dead ’s Norman Reedus and Academy Award-nominated actor Djimon Hounsou. The film is slated to be released in the spring of 2015.
Skybound released Kirkman’s new exorcism comic, Outcast , in June 2014 which recently got the green light for a television pilot with CINEMAX and Fox International. Kirkman will serve as creator and executive producer of the series.
Skybound Entertainment and digital entertainment company Maker Studios recently announced a deal for the studio to produce and air four digital series based off Skybound IPs.
Comic book titles published by Skybound include The Walking Dead, the superhero-comic Invincible, all-ages comic Super Dinosaur, the revenge drama Dead Body Road, and heist comic Thief of Thieves.
Skybound also creates a wide range of merchandise, including video games, apparel, board games, and action figures.
About Wizard World (OTCBB: WIZD)
Wizard World, Inc. (http://www.wizardworld.com ) produces Comic Cons and pop culture conventions across North America that celebrate the best in pop-fi, pop culture, movies, television, cosplay, comics, graphic novels, toys, video gaming, sci-fi, gaming, original art, collectibles, contests and more. A first-class lineup of topical programming takes place at each event, with celebrity Q&A’s, comics-themed sessions, costume contests, movie screenings, evening parties and more. Wizard World has also launched CONtv, a digital media channel in partnership with leading independent content distributor Cinedigm™ (NASDAQ: CIDM), and ComicConBox™, a premium subscription-based monthly box service. Fans can interact with Wizard World on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and other social media services.
The 2015 Wizard World Comic Con schedule is available at: www.wizardworld.com/wizcon.html .