IDW Acquires Classic Newspaper Strip Reprint Publisher

Thimble Theatre - H 2019
E.C. Segar/Sunday Press Books
Under IDW's control, Sunday Press will rerelease out-of-print titles and launch a digital publishing program.

Confirming rumors that had been circulating the convention floor throughout this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, IDW Publishing has announced that it has acquired Peter Maresca’s critically acclaimed Sunday Press Books, known for its archival work collecting classic American newspaper comic strips.

Since its launch, Sunday Press has worked to collect strips such as Chester Gould’s Dick Tracy, Winsor McCay’s Little Nemo in Slumberland and George Herriman’s Krazy Kat in oversized hardcovers, representing the material in the same dimensions in which it was originally seen. Sunday Press has been nominated for multiple honors, with wins from both the Will Eisner Comic Book Awards and Harvey Kurtzman Awards.

In a statement accompanying the news, Maresca said, “Since I accidentally became a publisher in 2005, my goal has been to do what no one was willing to do at the time: accurately recreate the experience of reading newspaper comics that were destined to disappear. But the business end has been daunting. Partnering with IDW allows me to take advantage of their experience and infrastructure to reach a broader audience while concentrating on the production of new editions.”

Added Chris Ryall, IDW’s president, publisher and chief creative officer: “The amazing restoration work and resultant books that Pete Maresca produces through Sunday Press is very much in sync with our own efforts to produce archival-quality reprints of the comics and newspaper strips that built the foundation of our entire industry. We’re all ecstatic to be able to provide the support and publishing acumen to help his gorgeous books reach an even wider audience.”

Under the new agreement, Maresca will remain in charge of the Sunday Press output, while IDW will both bring out-of-print titles back with new editions and launch a digital publishing program to bring the Sunday Press titles to a new audience. The first title from Sunday Press under IDW will be Little Joe, a collection of uncredited work from Harold Gray, the creator of Little Orphan Annie, to be released later this year.