Art Spiegelman Wins Angouleme Gran Prix

American comics creator Art Spiegelman, best known for his graphic novel Maus, has been awarded the top prize at the 2011 Angoulême Comics Festival. Angoulême, known in French as Festival International de la Bande Dessinée d'Angoulême, is held in the French town of Angoulême and is the leading comics festival in Europe. The Grand Prix is awarded annually to a comics creator for their entire body of work and lifetime achievement in the medium. Previous winners include Albert Uderzo, Will Eisner, Robert Crumb, Joann Sfar and Moebius.

New York Comic Con Expands to Four Days

New York Comic Con, scheduled for Oct. 13-Oct. 16 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York city, will expand to four days in 2011. The annual comics and pop culture convention will add a day of academic programing starting at noon on Thursday October 13 and add a preview night that evening that will admit fans beginning at 4pm and run until 7pm. The show will open its doors for fans and a full slate of programing beginning Friday October 14. Admittance to the Thursday preview night requires purchase of a 4-day show pass and a limited number of 4 days passes will be sold. More information is available on Medium At large, the blog of show director Lance Fensterman.

Dark Horse Digital Debut Delayed

Dark Horse Comics will not be launching its digital comics application in February as originally planned due to unspecified technical difficulties, as announced on their site. Meanwhile, Apple appears to have begun a crackdown on applications selling content within apps – a fact which may effect and hinder digital comics apps as a whole.

Comic-Con Registration Now Feb 5

After many technical difficulties, San Diego Comic-Con has announced the date for their latest attempt to sell tickets to this year's show online. Sales will begin at 9 a.m. Pacific Standard Time on February 5. Much to the chagrin of would-be attendees, previous attempts this year overwhelmed servers with the enormous demand. More details are available here.

Stan Lee and Marvel Launch Hockey Mascot Superheroes

Stan Lee and Marvel Comics are together again, this time to launch Guardian Project, a series of comics about superheroes based upon the NHL's hockey team mascots. Examples include a quickly growing tree-man representing the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Tezuka's Princess Knight Comes to the US

Groundbreaking manga Princess Knight, the 1950's manga about a princess who decides to defy convention by becoming a knight and having adventures from manga master Osamu Tezuka, is coming to the US in English translation at long last. Prestige manga publisher Vertical has announced that they will be publishing the book, which will be a first, although it appeared in an out of print bilingual edition in the 1970's. More details are available here.

True Grit and Falling Skies Offer Free Comics, True Blood Comic Returns

Both the popular Coen Brothers Western True Gritand the upcoming alien-invasion television series Falling Skies are now offering free online tie-in comics here and here. Meanwhile, the popular tie-in comic for the HBO vampire series True Blood is returning later this month with new issues.

This Week @ Good Comics For Kids

This week School Library Journal’s blog Good Comics for Kids covered reviews of Cinderella and Missile Mouse Vol. 3, what the Good Comics For Kids bloggers were reading this week, and the 1/26 roundup of good comics for kids and a Physics and Pencils themed links roundup from Brigid Alverson.

This Week @ The Beat

This week PWCW editor Heidi MacDonald’s blog The Beat covered the December Indie month-to-month comics sales numbers, the Act-I-Vate comics collective's fifth anniversary and new anthology webcomic, a grassroots campaign to promote creator-owned comics and speculation on the fate of the archives of the now defunct Comics Code Authority.