Starr in 1982
|Born||October 28, 1925|
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Died||June 30, 2015 89)(aged|
|Area(s)||Writer, Editor, Publisher, Producer|
| On Stage |
Little Orphan Annie
Leonard Starr (October 28, 1925 – June 30, 2015) was an American cartoonist, comic book artist, and advertising artist, best known for creating the newspaper comic strip On Stage and reviving Little Orphan Annie .
Born October 28, 1925,in New York City, Starr graduated from Manhattan's High School of Music and Art and then studied at Pratt Institute.
While attending Pratt during 1942-43, Starr worked for the Harry "A" Chesler and the Funnies, Inc. studios, contributing to the early comic book features produced at these studios.For Funnies, Inc., he began as a background artist, eventually inking Bob Oksner's pencils. He graduated to drawing for early Timely/Marvel Comics titles, including the Human Torch and the Sub-Mariner.
Throughout the 1940s, Starr worked for a plethora of publishers of both comic books and pulps, including Better Publications, Consolidated Book, Croyden Publications, E. R. Ross Publishing, Fawcett Comics (doing Don Winslow of the Navy, 1944–46), Hillman Periodicals and M. C. Combs.He worked with Joe Simon and Jack Kirby on their earlier romance comics titles, in particular the Crestwood/Prize title Young Romance .
In the late 1940s, he drew for EC Comics, including War Against Crime , before working both as an advertising artist and producing a large amount of work for both the American Comics Group and DC Comics titles during the early to mid-1950s. His DC work spanned a large number of covers, and work on titles as diverse as Doctor 13 , House of Mystery , Gang Busters , Pow-Wow Smith, Indian Lawman and Star-Spangled War Stories , mainly prior to 1957.For ACG, he worked on Adventures into the Unknown, Operation Peril and Soldiers of Fortune among other titles. In 1955-56, he moved from comic books to comic strips with uncredited work on King Features' Flash Gordon .
In 1957, Starr created the comic strip On Stage , later titled Mary Perkins, On Stage for the Chicago-Tribune-New York News Syndicate.Characterized by a mix of soap opera, adventure and humor, the strip featured tight, realistic graphics and, from the beginning, strong layouts, design and storytelling. He received the National Cartoonists Society's Story Comic Strip Award for On Stage in 1960 and 1963, and their Reuben Award in 1965. He continued producing Mary Perkins, On Stage until 1979. Starr would later cite the work of Alex Raymond and Milton Caniff as influences on the strip's artwork.
Starr returned to comic books very briefly during the 1970s and 1980s, working on "Morbius, the Living Vampire" for Marvel in 1975 [ citation needed ].and providing art for DC's Who's Who in the DC Universe (1986) and for a Superman and Lois Lane story in Action Comics . For Dargaud in Paris, he created Kelly Green with Stan Drake in 1980. This series of graphic novels about the sexy and capable female action heroine Kelly Green, were illustrated by Drake. In 1985 he wrote and illustrated an action/adventure graphic novel published only in France Operation Psy featuring Cannonball Carmody. That same year he was enlisted by artist Frank Bolle to take over writing the strip Winnie Winkle (without credit) which he did until its end in 1996. He also ghost wrote Rip Kirby as a favor to his friend, artist John Prentice, in the strip's final years
Starr expanded into animation in the 1980s, as he noted, "Started writing television scripts in the early 1970s, and in 1984 I was asked to develop and write the bible for the animated television show ThunderCats , and also act as the story editor and head writer. Moved to Westport, Connecticut in 1970 where I still live today." Starr eventually wrote 23 episodes for ThunderCats.
He also worked on the Rankin Bass series Ghost Warrior (1985).
In the 1980s Starr attended as a guest several comic conventions held in New York. Also, he was a guest at the 1982 San Diego Comic-Con, at which he received an Inkpot Award.
In 1979 he revived the comic strip Little Orphan Annie . The strip had been in reprints since 1974 after a string of unsuccessful artists had succeeded the famous creator Harold Gray, who had died in 1968. Retitled Annie, Starr's incarnation of the strip received the National Cartoonists Society's Story Comic Strip Award in 1983 and 1984. Starr continued it successfully until his retirement in 2000.
Beginning in 2006, Starr produced new artwork for the covers to the ongoing series of On Stage reprint volumes published by Classic Comics Press.To publicize the reprints he was a guest at the 2008 New York Comic Con and 2009 San Diego Comic-Con. He died June 30, 2015.
Classic Comics Press has announced plans to publish Cannonball Carmody in English for the first time plus excerpts of sketchbooks from early in Starr's career.
Jacob "Kirby" Kurtzberg was an American comic book artist, writer and editor, widely regarded as one of the medium's major innovators and one of its most prolific and influential creators. He grew up in New York City and learned to draw cartoon figures by tracing characters from comic strips and editorial cartoons. He entered the nascent comics industry in the 1930s, drawing various comics features under different pen names, including Jack Curtiss, before ultimately settling on Jack Kirby. In 1940, he and writer-editor Joe Simon created the highly successful superhero character Captain America for Timely Comics, predecessor of Marvel Comics. During the 1940s, Kirby regularly teamed with Simon, creating numerous characters for that company and for National Comics Publications, later to become DC Comics.
Charles Clarence Beck was an American cartoonist and comic book artist, best known for his work on Captain Marvel at Fawcett Comics and DC Comics.
Underground comix are small press or self-published comic books that are often socially relevant or satirical in nature. They differ from mainstream comics in depicting content forbidden to mainstream publications by the Comics Code Authority, including explicit drug use, sexuality, and violence. They were most popular in the United States in the late 1960s and 1970s, and in the United Kingdom in the 1970s.
An American comic book is a thin periodical originating in the United States, on average 32 pages, containing comics. While the form originated in 1933, American comic books first gained popularity after the 1938 publication of Action Comics, which included the debut of the superhero Superman. This was followed by a superhero boom that lasted until the end of World War II. After the war, while superheroes were marginalized, the comic book industry rapidly expanded and genres such as horror, crime, science fiction and romance became popular. The 1950s saw a gradual decline, due to a shift away from print media in the wake of television and the impact of the Comics Code Authority. The late 1950s and the 1960s saw a superhero revival and superheroes remained the dominant character archetype throughout the late 20th century into the 21st century.
See also: 1920s in comics, other events of the 1930s, 1940s in comics and the list of years in comics
Mary Perkins, On Stage is an American newspaper comic strip by Leonard Starr for the Chicago Tribune-New York News Syndicate. It ran from February 10, 1957 to September 9, 1979, with the switch to the longer title in 1961. Some papers carried the strip under the shortened title Mary Perkins.
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Notable events of 1968 in comics. See also List of years in comics. See also: 1968 in comics, 1969 in comics, 1960s in comics and the list of years in comics
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Famous Funnies is an American comic strip anthology series published from 1934 to 1955. Popular culture historians consider Famous Funnies the first true American comic book, following seminal precursors.
This is a list of comics-related events in 1970.
Young Romance is a romantic comic book series created by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby for the Crestwood Publications imprint Prize Comics in 1947. Generally considered the first romance comic, the series ran for 124 consecutive issues under Prize imprint, and a further 84 published by DC Comics after Crestwood stopped producing comics.
Notable events of 1967 in comics. See also List of years in comics.
Fred Schwab was an American cartoonist whose humor panels and short features were published in a wide variety of comic books from at least 1938 to 1950, during a period fans and historians call the Golden Age of Comic Books. His notable comic-book appearances include Timely Comics' Marvel Comics #1, the first publication of the company that would become Marvel Comics; and some of the earliest publications of the companies that would become DC Comics.
Western comics is a comics genre usually depicting the American Old West frontier and typically set during the late nineteenth century. The term is generally associated with an American comic books genre published from the late 1940s through the 1950s. Western comics of the period typically featured dramatic scripts about cowboys, gunfighters, lawmen, bounty hunters, outlaws, and Native Americans. Accompanying artwork depicted a rural America populated with such iconic images as guns, cowboy hats, vests, horses, saloons, ranches, and deserts, contemporaneous with the setting.
Alden Spurr McWilliams generally credited as Al McWilliams and A. McWilliams, was an American comics artist who co-created the first African-American lead character of a comic strip. He won the National Cartoonists Society's 1978 award for Comic Book: Story.