July 1-15, 2005 Edition PEOPLE Former Publisher of Marvel Comics Joins CRACKED
NEW YORK, NY/06/21/05As part of its continued commitment to strengthening its publishing operations, Cracked Entertainment, Inc. announced today that Michael Z. Hobson, the former publisher of both Marvel Comics and Scholastic, has joined the company as a senior advisor. He will work directly with CRACKED’s CEO and Publisher Monty Sarhan.
“Mike has been in publishing for a remarkable number of years. He led Marvel through its most successful periods in the modern erafrom the days when comic books were still primarily distributed on the newsstand and into the era of the collectors and bookstore markets,” said Sarhan. “I have already come to rely on Mike as a trusted friend and advisor and I’m excited to have him on board.”
Hobson spent his almost fifty-year career working in almost every area of publishing. A graduate of Harvard College, he began his career at Little Brown in Boston. After stints at “Publishers’ Weekly” and as a literary agent at William Morris, Hobson joined Scholastic, the global children’s publishing and media company. He spent over thirteen years in various positions at Scholastic, the majority of that time as Publisher of its paperback book clubs, where he was responsible for all aspects of the business, including acquisitions, editorial, marketing and distribution.
Hobson then joined Marvel Comics as Publishera post that he held for over fifteen years. During that time, he was directly responsible for all editorial, marketing, distribution and production of Marvel’s comics, magazines and graphic novels. Following his tenure as Publisher, Hobson went on to run Marvel’s international business as Managing Director of Marvel Europe, including its companies in the United Kingdom and Italy, as well as its publishing and licensing operations throughout the rest of Europe. Hobson then returned to the US, where he became President of Parachute Publishing, a major packager of fiction and non-fiction book series for teens and ‘tweens, most notably R.L. Stine’s immensely popular “Fear Street” and “Goosebumps” series and the popular series of books featuring Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen.
The company’s emphasis on bringing experienced publishing executives from the comics world is a significant part of an overall strategy. “CRACKED straddles both the comics and magazine worlds. Mike was at Marvel at a time when comics were still being distributed on the newsstand. He therefore understands the pressures and dynamics of the newsstand and has the business sense and experience to navigate those challenges,” explained Sarhan.
“I’m very impressed with the vision that Monty has laid out for CRACKED and I’m extremely happy to be working with his team,” said Hobson. “I think it’s clear to both fans and to the marketplace that CRACKED is making a significant commitment to its publishing division and to insuring the successful re-birth of CRACKED Magazine.”
The company’s redesign of the 47-year-old CRACKED Magazine is already underway, with an all new website slated to come online sometime in the fall and the magazine making a return to newsstands in early 2006.
About Cracked Entertainment, Inc.
Based in New York, Cracked Entertainment ( http://www.cracked.com) publishes CRACKED Magazine, one of America’s oldest and most well-known humor magazines.
Michel to Head William Morriss UK Unit
NEW YORK, NY/06/22/05Carolyn Michel, who found and edited the Greg Dyke and Jon Snow memoirs, is departing her post as managing director and publisher of Harper Press, the literary arm of HarperCollins, to become head of the William Morris agencys new UK division. She will also oversee film/TV/theatre operations. She will begin her new job August 15. The announcement was made by William Morris president, David Wirtschafter.
UK authors she will represent at the agency include Anita Shreve, author of The Pilot’s Wife, and John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.
She began her publishing career at Chatto & Windus and Jonathan Cape, and later helped found Bloomsbury Publishing. She also served at Orion and as publisher of the Vintage paperback unit at Random House.
Ms Michel will report to the worldwide heads of William Morris’s literary department, Jennifer Rudolph Walsh and Suzanne Gluck, plus the agency’s chief operating officer Irving J Weintraub.
She is the wife of Labour leader Lord Evans of Temple Guiting.