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“Big Figure” For Graphic Novel

Watchmen movie adaptation helps boost trade paperback sales in 2007

Regardless of how faithful Zack Snyder’s movie will end up being to the original comic, there’s one thing most fans are happy about — that the movie will get more people to read and recognize the genius that is Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ Watchmen.

According to sales figures released by Diamond, one of the largest comics distributors in the U.S., it certainly seems like that is the case.

Please note that the following sales numbers below are estimates, and only covers the direct market served by Diamond. It does not include newsstands, book stores or overseas markets.

As of November 2007, the Watchmen trade paperback, distributed by DC Comics, has sold approximately 58,168 units year-to-date. That’s more units than any other trade paperback in 2007 so far.

To put those numbers in perspective, during the same time period, Marvel's Civil War sold 44,714 units and IDW’s 30 Days of Night sales came in at around 31,270 units. Alan Moore’s highly anticipated The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The Black Dossier sold an incredible 20,711 units in November 2007 alone.

Watchmen’s biggest sales month came in August 2007 on the heels of July’s Comic-Con announcement of Warner Brother’s planned movie adaptation helmed by Zack Snyder. That month, the trade paperback was in rank #13 with 3,617 units of reorder activity. Watchmen’s sales rank during all the other months of 2007 averaged at around the #57 position with 1,928 units of reorder activity.

News of Watchmen’s increased sales activity might be bittersweet to some fans who would prefer that the rights of the graphic novel revert back to its creators — Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. According to the deal they signed with DC back in 1985, this can only happen after the comic has been out of print for 18 months. The graphic novel’s cult status combined with the fact that a major Watchmen motion will be released soon, makes it very unlikely that this will happen in the near future.

Source: Sales figures gathered form Comic Book Resources

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