Angel Gate CEO Debbie Bishop brings together a lot of skills in the service of her company. A screenwriter, producer, novelist and graphic designer, Bishop launched Angel Gate in 2003; since then the Los Angeles publishing house has released novels, graphic novels and cookbooks, as well as YA fiction and children's picture and chapter books. Bishop is also involved with developing films based on her print products through her production company, Left Field Film.
Bishop's model is to “find properties that can be produced in different mediums and formats. I look for holes in the marketplace and try to find properties to fill them.” And if she can't find the right property, she often creates the works herself.
This summer Angel Gate will publish War Eagles by Carl Macek, the first in a series of adventure/fantasy novels (with a series of YA novels set to come) created in conjunction with Ray Harryhausen, the legendary Hollywood animator and special effects creator. There's a War Eagles film in development (coproduced by Left Field Film and Hand Picked Films), and both the adult and YA Harryhausen novels will be part of an Angel Gate line of books called Ray Harryhausen Presents. This summer Angel Gate will also publish Shadow Boys: Escape from the Mantelrealm, the first book in a series of fantasy novels for teens written by Bishop and based on her 2003 illustrated children's book The Fairies of Bladderwhack Pond. Both books will be published in July. Angel Gate titles are distributed by NBN.
Bishop began her career in Hollywood creating marketing and design campaigns for TV and film projects. In 2001 she wrote a screenplay that eventually became Black Tide, a 15-issue comic book series published by Image Comics (and later by Avatar Press) that was collected into an Angel Gate paperback graphic novel and then adapted into a YA prose work. Writing the Black Tide comics led to her business model--stories aimed at adults, teens or younger readers that can be told in series and in multiple formats.
She's published children's picture books written by actress Jane Seymour (This One 'n' That One series), and her partnership with Harryhausen (he created the classic stop-motion animation in films like Mighty Joe Young) led to Ray Harryhausen Presents, “a Harryhausen brand of visually exciting projects,” Bishop said, that includes books as well as movie projects. And she's releasing three new graphic novel collections based on her books Fairies of Bladderwhack Pond, Shadow Boys (both with art by Andy Park) and a new Black Tide collection with art by John Delaney. In addition to launching two new periodical comics miniseries, Zevin 7 and Platypus Rex, she has plans to offer PDFs of the comics for a small price.
“I just try to publish fun entertainment for the whole family,” said Bishop. “Books, comics, movies--just good entertainment.”