Bill Sienkiewicz Speaks Out Against Fox Studios' San Diego Comic-Con Dazzler Giveaway

Once upon a time, comic book artist Bill Sienkiewicz drew The Dazzler comic.


When making the X-Men Apocalypse movie, they filmed a scene with the young X-Men shopping in a mall, that was cut from the film, but will be included in the DVD Blu Ray release. And one of the young mutants picking out a Dazzler album from the racks that looked rather familiar.


And so Fox used it as a giveaway for San Diego Comic-Con. Without mentioning it to the artist.


Bill Sienkiewicz was exhibiting at the show, as he does every year. And he found out. He writes,

So…. 20th Century Fox was offering this Dazzler 12 in. album at SDCC in connection w X-Men Apocalypse digital release. I actually found out about it at the con when people started coming up to me in increasing frequency for signatures.

This practice is hardly unusual standard operating procedure for corporations. Even so, it still rankles. I'm one guy. I've been doing this comic-book thing for years. I'm aware most everything is Work-Made-for-Hire. Still, I received no prior notification (a common courtesy), no thank you ( ditto), no written credit in any form whatsoever either on the piece or in connection with the premium, absolutely no compensation and no comp copies of the album.

It's like two losing trifectas wrapped in an altogether indifferent f-ck you.

Booth-mates Tiziano De Santis, Lauren Jett, and others nearby had to nearly physically restrain met from going to the Fox booth and making a scene, where I would have taken it out on minimum wage booth-sitters who had zero idea what this lunatic was pissed about.

Am I over -reacting here?

Do I have the right-at least on behalf of fellow creators -to, at the very least expect decent treatment and some kind of minuscule, even boilerplate, acknowledgment? Asking that they part with a few coins, a few shekels, is insanely naive and hilarious I know(would be a nice gesture, though, and go a long way in soothing my mutant Polish artist rage), but seriously, is a thank you and a note of credit pushing it? I don't think so, but maybe I'm Stockholmed as to what passes as standard treatment of freelancers.

He also states, more conciliatory,

That's why going over to the Fox booth and blowing a gasket would have penalized workers who probably only took the gig to get free tickets to Comic-con.

Also, I honestly never expect people to know who I am when I introduce myself, even at a comic show. I've complimented artists in small press areas at cons to blank stares and looks of annoyance that I interrupted their conversation. And when I did introduce myself and say I'm a fellow professional, their blank look is compounded with annoyance that I didn't buy anything. I do tend to forget myself though, when I go nuts over someone's work. I half expected a couple of the women creators (because some of the ballsiest-to-the-wallsiest stuff now is being done by female creators) to respond to my enthusiasm with an eye-roll and, " I have a boyfriend."

So rudeness is not merely a corporate failing. I don't want to sound like a cosplay version of Ms. Manners or a whiney nerd, but really, how hard it is to say 'thank you'?

We know people from Fox Studios read Bleeding Cool. Maybe they could get in touch? We're happy to help out…


Enjoyed this? Please share on social media!

About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
Comments will load 8 seconds after page. Click here to load them now.