RIP Gene Dynarski

#RIP: actor Gene Dynarski has passed away at the age of 86. His death was reported on April 24, 2020, but he died on Feb. 27, 2020. He played Krodac / Ben Childress in “#StarTrek: #TOS”; Cmdr. Orfil Quinteros in #TNG; Benedict in #Batman (1966 TV series); Centaur I / Guard in #VoyageToTheBottomOfTheSea; Warden Barmak in #LandOfTheGiants; Ike in #CloseEncountersOfTheThirdKind; Ernie Stefaniuk in #TheXFiles; Vasil in #TheInvisibleMan (1976 TV series); & more.

Our condolences to his family, friends and fans. 🖖 #LLAP

Gene Dynarski

Gene Dynarski (1933-2020)

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RIP Malcolm Dixon

#RIP: actor Malcolm Dixon has died at the age of 66. Born in Sept., 1953 (his exact birthdate is unknown), he played Leektar the Ewok Warrior in “#StarWars VI: #ReturnOfTheJedi” (he was also a film extra in “Star Wars IV: #ANewHope), an Oompa Loompa in #WillyWonkaAndTheChocolateFactory, a dwarf in #FlashGordon, Strutter in #TimeBandits, an additional performer in #TheDarkCrystal, Goblin Corps in #Labyrinth, Diddy in #SnowWhite (1987), Nelwyn Band Member in #Willow, & more.

Our condolences to his family, friends and fans. May he rest in peace and may the Force be with him.

Malcolm Dixon

Malcolm Dixon (1953-2020)

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RIP Honor Blackman

#RIP: actress Honor Blackman has passed away at the age of 94. She played Catherine Gale in #TheAvengers (1961 TV series, 43 episodes), Professor Lasky in #DoctorWho, & more, including her best known role as Pussy Galore in the James Bond spy film #Goldfinger.

Our condolences to her family, friends and fans. May she rest in peace.

Honor Blackman

Honor Blackman (1925-2020)

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RIP Andrew Jack

#RIP: actor and dialect coach Andrew Jack has died at the age of 76 from #COVID19. He played Major Ematt in “#StarWars VII: #TheForceAwakens”, “Star Wars VIII: #TheLastJedi”, Moloch (voice) in “#Solo: A Star Wars Story”; & more. He was also a dialect coach (miscellaneous crew) for a large number of films, including #Dolittle, “#Avengers: #Endgame”, “Avengers: #InfinityWar”, “#Thor: #Ragnarok”, “#RogueOne: A Star Wars Story”, #GuardiansOfTheGalaxy, “#SnowWhite and #TheHuntsman”, “#CaptainAmerica: #TheFirstAvenger”, #AlienVsPredator, #TheLordOfTheRings (#TheFellowshipOfTheRing, #TheTwoTowers, #ReturnOfTheKing), & more.

Our condolences to his family, friends and fans. May he rest in peace, and may the Force be with him.

Andrew Jack

Andrew Jack (1944-2020)

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Diamond Comic Halts Payments; More Comic Book Shops Permanently Closing

The state of the #ComicBook industry continues to worsen as more comic book shops permanently close and primary comic book distributor “#DiamondComic Distributors” halts payments to publishers and other vendors due to severe cash flow problems.

In a letter released to the public by Stan Heidman, president of Geppi Family Enterprises (the parent company of Diamond Comic Distributors), Diamond said the move is in response to the impact of the #COVID19 pandemic on the supply chain. He said,

“While the full impact of this epidemic is still unknown, one thing is certain: supply chain disruptions have cash flow implications across the extended industry that can’t be underestimated. While we work to understand the current industry landscape, the unfortunate truth is that we are no longer receiving consistent payments from our customers. This requires that at this time, we hold payments to vendors previously scheduled to release this week.”

A network of about 2,000 independent comic book shops that buy their stock from Diamond Comic nonreturnable at wholesale prices. Diamond Comic Distributors delivers comics periodicals (mostly superhero), graphic novels, prose books, and pop culture merchandise, to these stores. Last week as comics shops around the country were forced to either shut down completely or restrict admittance to their shops due to the pandemic, Diamond announced it was halting shipments of new weekly comics to comics shops indefinitely.

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Diamond Comic Distributors is having cash flow problems for one simple reason: comic book shops aren’t open in most of the U.S. and some are more are starting to permanently close. Three more comic book shops reported that they are permanently closing in the past week:

Sho’Nuff Comics of Tuscaloosa, Alabama Closing

The store released the following statement on Facebook on Mar. 24:

“This is something that we never thought we would have to be writing. After March 31st Sho’Nuff Comics will no longer be in business. Through the month of April we will have sporadic hours, but will keep them updated on Facebook. Due to many different factors and the current health crisis, it’s all but done us in.”

Blue Moon Comics of San Rafael, California on Verge of Closing

The store released the following statement on Facebook on Mar. 20:

“Just wanted to inform you of our status. We have stopped all comic shipments at this time. So, no new comics for the next month or so. Stephen and I are accessing the viability of keeping the business going. As you know, business has not been good for quite some time and this may be fate’s way of saying it is time to stop. When we know you will know. Thank you all for your support over the years. We do this for you, the comic fans and the love of the medium!! Please be safe and lets all hope for good things to come after this trying time is over.”

Purple Turtle Comics of Vallejo, California Closed

After opening only a year ago, after opening only a year ago, the popular store that ran signings with well know comic book creators, the Diamond shutdown was too much, it seems; and the store has closed permanently.

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Comic Book Shops in Serious Trouble

Over the past few years, the #ComicBook industry, and comic book shops in particular, have not been doing well. Sales of newer comic books have been dropping and many comic book shops have already permanently closed. Given the shaky ground that comic book shops have been on for some time, new pressures are imperiling them even further:

  1. Due to the current #pandemic, many comic books have been forced to temporarily close in areas where governments have implemented “shelter-in-place” or “stay-at-home” orders for the general public in which only critical stores can remain open and the employees who work for the critical stores and institutions can continue to go to work under these conditions. Comic book shops are classified as being “non-essential”.
  2. #DiamondComic Distributors, the exclusive distributor for new releases from all of the comics’ direct market’s biggest publishers (including #DCComics, #MarvelComics, #DarkHorse Comics, #ImageComics, Dynamite Entertainment, BOOM! Studios, and IDW Publishing, as well as many small publishers), is no longer taking in new comics at its warehouse. The hold (the result of a slowdown in the economy due to the #COVID19 pandemic) will remain in place until further notice. Diamond will continue to ship out products that are already in its warehouse for the time being.
  3. Comic book producers don’t generally offer comic book shops the ability to return unsold inventory for refunds. This means that comic book shops that can’t sell any products are also stuck with inventory that they can’t return. Image Comics did, however, step up and change its policy so that comic book shop owners can return unsold products.
  4. Leading comic book retailer Joe Field of Flying Colors Comics & Other Cool Stuff in Concord, California, has called on comic book publishers to suspend publication and not replace print distribution with spotty distribution to stores still open or doing mail-order, or switch to digital publication.
  5. Transcontinental Printing, the main Canadian printer of DC Comics, and countless other publishers, is shutting down for three weeks. The Canadian provinces of Quebec and Ontario are also closing all non-essential businesses until at least mid-April.

In an email sent to his customer base, Ed Greenberg (the owner of Collector’s Paradise in Los Angeles, CA), wrote the following:

“We have been selling comics for close to 26 years now, and this is truly the first time that we are uncertain about the future of our store, our industry and our favorite art form.”

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RIP Lyle Waggoner

#RIP: actor Lyle Waggoner has died at the age of 84. He played Colonel Steve Trevor, Jr. / Major Steve Trevor in #WonderWoman (TV series); mechanical man #1 in #LostInSpace; Xerko in #MorkAndMindy; Al / Gilberto DeVincenzo / Monty in #FantasyIsland; & much more, including 7 years playing multiple characters on the TV variety show #TheCarolBurnettShow.

Our sincerest condolences to his family, friends and fans. May he rest in peace.

Lyle Waggoner

Lyle Waggoner (1935-2020)

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