Virgin Comics shuttering NY office
LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Virgin Comics, a partnership between Virgin Books and India-based comics publisher Gotham Entertainment that had Hollywood dreams, announced Tuesday that it is closing its New York offices and will reorganize its operations.
Citing "the current macro-economic downturn," the company, under CEO Sharad Devarajan and president Suresh Seetharaman, said it hopes to restructure the business and consolidate its operations at a Los Angeles base. Eight people have been laid off.
The company launched in 2006 with Virgin Group chief Richard Branson, author Deepak Chopra and filmmaker Shekhar Kapur among its founders. It began by publishing comics inspired by Indian and Hindu mythology and then moved into a line known as Director's Cut, which attempted to lure filmmakers into the comics world in hopes of subsequently turning their books into film projects
Guy Ritchie, John Woo, Nicolas Cage, Ed Burns and musician Dave Stewart were among the contributors to the line, with Ritchie's "The Game Keeper" finding a home at Warner Bros.
The comics were slickly produced, but Virgin remained a marginal comic-book player whose titles generated low sales.
The future of the film projects is unclear, but the company said it would not remain idle.
"We remain excited about the business and partnerships we have built through Virgin Comics and are working towards a restructuring that properly takes the business forward," Devarajan said in a statement.
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