Kiss seals comics deal


The rock group Kiss has partnered with comic book production company Platinum Studios to create a new comic book entertainment company called the Kiss Comics Group.

While this is not the first time there have been comics featuring the members of the band, it will be the first time that Kiss — under the banner of Kiss Catalog Ltd., run by original members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley — will produce its own comic book-based characters.

The co-run venture aims to be more than a publisher; it plans to expand the comic book characters' images onto multimedia platforms including print, mobile, online, film, television and licensed merchandise.

First up from the KCG will be "Kiss 4K," the story of Simmons, Stanley and other band members from rock stars to world-protecting warrior spirits. "4K" will be released in March as a 3-foot comic priced at $50, with an intent to make it the largest comic book ever published. That will be followed by merchandise including apparel, video games and comic strips for cell phones.

Platinum, which has projects such as "Cowboys and Aliens" set up at Sony, is counting on the multigenerational Kiss fans, as well as more than 4,000 fan sites, from around the globe and will launch simultaneously in the U.S., France, Germany, Italy and Spain.

The band members said they will be involved in all day-to-day decisions and relish the idea of making a multiplatform thrust.

"The Kiss comics that have come out were licenses; they weren't truly of part of the mythology," Platinum chairman Scott Mitchell Rosenberg said. "This is all of us working together. (Simmons and Stanley) care about every panel of every comic and how an image looks on a shirt."