The 29th annual Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards ceremony will be held Friday night, July 21 in the Indigo Ballroom at the Hilton Bayfront, just a short walk south from the Convention Center. This year’s ceremony celebrates the Will Eisner Centennial:He would have turned 100 years old in March.
The doors of the Indigo Ballroom will open at 7:45, and the ceremonies will get under way at 8:00. Attendance at the event is free to all Comic-Con members. Be sure to bring your convention badge to be admitted—and I.D. if you wish to purchase alcoholic beverages. Advance seating for VIPs (nominees, sponsors, presenters) and those with pro badges will begin at 7:00. No-host bars will be set up both in the ballroom and the ballroom lobby. The ceremony is expected to run until about 10:30 pm. It will be followed by a reception in the Indigo Ballroom foyer, with live music by San Diego’s famed CheeMaisel ukulele duo.
Named for the pioneering comics creator and graphic novelist Will Eisner,The Eisner Awards, considered the “Oscars” of the comic book industry, will be given out in 31 categories for works published in 2016. A complete list of all the nominees can be found in the Souvenir Book. All attendees will also get a souvenir program listing the nominees.
Among presenters at this year’s ceremony are
• Actor/writer Thomas Lennon (Reno 911, Odd Couple, Balls of Fire, Night at the Museum series)
• Actor/comedian Danny Pudi (Community, Powerless, DuckTales)
• iZombie creator and Eisner nominee Chris Roberson (Edison Rex)
• Eisner-nominatedcomics writerGail Simone (Batgirl, Birds of Prey, Wonder Woman, Clean Room)
• Watchmen co-creator Dave Gibbons (UK’s first Comics Laureate)
• British TV host/comics writer Jonathan Ross
• Creator of The Tick Ben Edlund (producer/writer, Supernatural)
• Tick actor Griffin Newman (“Arthur”)
• Actor/graphic novelist Greg Grunberg (Heroes; Dream Jumpers)
• Graphic novelist and Comic-Con Special Guest Victoria Jamieson (Roller Girl, The Great Pet Escape)
• Bestselling author Jonathan Maberry (Joe Ledger series, V-Wars comic)
• Comics and animation writer/Eisner nominee Paul Dini (Batman: The Animated Series, Harley Quinn co-creator)
• Magician/voice actor Misty Lee
• Voice actor/comedian Phil LaMarr (MadTV, Samurai Jack, Futurama, Justice League)
• Beloved cartoonist Sergio Aragonés (Groo, MAD)
• WriterAnina Bennett (Boilerplate, Heartbreakers)
•Writer/artist Bill Morrison (Bongo Comics, new editor of MAD magazine, president of National Cartoonists Society)
• Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award recipient and voice actor Kayre Morrison
The title sponsor for the awards this year is SYFY, the global, multiplatform media brand that gives science fiction fans of all kinds a universe to call home, with original science fiction, fantasy, paranormal and superhero programming, live event coverage and imaginative digital and social content. SYFY’s lineup of shows to be presented at Comic-Con includes The Expanse, The Magicians, 12 Monkeys, and the new series Krypton and Happy!
The principal sponsors are comiXology andGentle Giant Studios. Supporting sponsors are Alternate Reality Comics (Las Vegas), Atlantis Fantasyworld (Santa Cruz, CA), Diamond Comics/Geppi Entertainment Museum, Flying Colors & Other Cool Stuff (Concord, CA),Marquis Books, mycomicshop.com, andStrange Adventures (Halifax, Nova Scotia).
The Eisner Awards evening includes the presentation of several other special awards. Since 1984, Comic-Con has been bestowing the annual Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award (to be presented by Bob’s daughter Ruth), and the Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award has been handed out since 1982. Also being presented is the Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailing Award, presided over byJoe Ferrara.
This is the 13th year for presentation of theBill Finger Award for Excellence in Comic Book Writing. The 2017 recipients are William Messner-Loebs (Superman, the Flash, Aquaman, Mr. Monster, Hawkman, Green Arrow, Wonder Woman, Dr. Fate, Jonny Quest, Spider-Man,Thor) andJack Kirby (co-creator, Captain America, The X-Men, The Fantastic Four, Avengers, etc.; creator, Fourth World, New Gods, Mister Miracle, Kamandi, The Demon, Captain Victory,etc.); the awards will be presented by Mark Evanier. The major sponsor for the Finger Award is DC Comics. Supporting sponsors are Heritage Auctions and Maggie Thompson.
The Eisner Awards are part of, and underwritten by, Comic-Con International, a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to creating awareness of and appreciation for comics and related popular artforms, primarily through the presentation of conventions and events that celebrate the historic and ongoing contributions of comics to art and culture. More information about the Eisner Awards can be found at http://www.comic-con.org/awards/eisners-current-info