Black Mask Studios
Black Mask Studios Comics logo.jpg
Country of originUnited States
Headquarters locationLos Angeles, California
DistributionDiamond Book Distributors (books)[1]
Key peopleMatt Pizzolo
Brett Gurewitz
Steve Niles
Publication typesComic books, books

Black Mask Studios is a comic book and graphic novel publishing company formed by Matt Pizzolo, Steve Niles and Brett Gurewitz, designed as a new infrastructure to support comic book creators and a new pipeline for transgressive art.[2][3]


On March 20, 2012, it was announced that Occupy Comics, the charity comic book inspired by and raising funds for Occupy Wall Street, organized by Pizzolo, would not be released through an existing comic book publisher, but through a new company called Black Mask Studios.[4]

Niles and Gurewitz joined with Pizzolo to found Black Mask, Niles noting "if V for Vendetta were created today there would be no publisher for it."[5][6] Pizzolo has explained that Black Mask will operate under the mottos "to create you must destroy" and "Inspire, never meddle".[7]

On June 12, 2012, Black Mask Studios opened its webstore and officially released Occupy Comics No. 1 with the announcement that Pulitzer Prize-winner Art Spiegelman, Bill Ayers, Ryan Alexander-Tanner, Jimmy Palmiotti, and Matt Bors had joined the book's roster.[8]

On September 17, 2012, the one-year anniversary of Occupy Wall Street, Occupy Comics No. 2 was released to the project's Kickstarter backers and via the Black Mask Studios website. The cover featured a new and iconic illustration by V For Vendetta artist David Lloyd pitting his seminal character V against the Wall Street Charging Bull.[9]

Nearly a year later, on February 14, 2013, Black Mask Studios unveiled its first slate of comics with a two-pronged distribution strategy of supplying comics to traditional comic book shops as well as direct-to-fan through digital-physical hybrid subscriptions.[10]

The following year, in October 2014, Black Mask Studios announced its second slate of 15 new series, a major expansion for the company, flagshipped by Sinatoro from Grant Morrison and Vanesa Del Rey and Disciples from Steve Niles and Christopher Mitten.[11]

Black Mask Studios has since announced several non-comics productions: a TV adaptation of Five Ghosts by Frank Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham, executive produced by Pizzolo and Gurewitz for Syfy and Universal Cable Productions with a pilot by Evan Daugherty;[12] an animated feature film trilogy of Godkiller by Pizzolo, Anna Muckcracker Wieszczyk and Ben Templesmith,[13] a TV adaptation of The Disciples by Niles and Christopher Mitten at Universal Cable Productions,[14] a TV adaptation of Mayday at Imperative,[15] and an adaptation of Sinatoro by Grant Morrison and Vanesa Del Rey at Universal Television with a pilot by Heroes writers Adam Armus and Kay Foster, co-produced with Chris Weitz (Rogue One) and Paul Weitz (Mozart in the Jungle).[16] According to The Hollywood Reporter, Black Mask currently has 11 projects in development at studios.[17]

Black Mask Studios announced in February 2017 that a new comic Calexit will be released in May 2017, which will be about the Pacific Coast Sister Cities Resistance in a California under martial law by the President of the United States set in an occupied Los Angeles.[18]

In May 2017, it was announced that Black Mask title Kim & Kim earned the company its first Eisner Award nomination.


The first slate of titles was scheduled to launch on May Day 2013 with Occupy Comics No. 1.[19]

The second slate of titles began debuting in late 2014 with new series scheduled to launch through mid-2015.[20]

The third slate of titles (dubbed Black Mask's Class Of 2016) debuted in Spring 2016.[21]

Year Title Author(s) Artist(s) Notes
2013 Occupy Comics Various Various
12 Reasons To Die Matthew Rosenberg and Patrick Kindlon Various Created by Wu-Tang Clan's Ghostface Killah, producer Adrian Younge, and executive producer RZA[22]
Ballistic Adam Egypt Mortimer Darick Robertson, Diego Rodriguez
Liberator Matt Miner Javier Aranda, Joaquin Pereyra
2014 Toe Tag Riot Matt Miner Sean Von Gorman
Godkiller Matt Pizzolo Anna Muckcracker Wieszczyk, Ben Templesmith (covers)
Critical Hit Matt Miner Jonathan Brandon Sawyer
Pirouette Mark Miller Carlos Granda
Last Born Patrick Meaney Eric Zawadzki
2015 We Can Never Go Home Matthew Rosenberg and Patrick Kindlon Josh Hood
Mayday Curt Pires Chris Peterson
Space Riders (volume 1) Fabian Rangel Jr. Alexis Ziritt
The Disciples Steve Niles Christopher Mitten
Transference Michael Moreci Ron Salas
Young Terrorists Matt Pizzolo Amancay Nahuelpan
X'ed Tony Dreannan Ayhan Hayrula
2016 Jade Street Protection Services Katy Rex and Fabian Lelay Fabian Lelay, Mara Jayne Carpenter, Annie Wu (covers)
Kim & Kim Magdalene Visaggio Eva Cabrera, Claudia Aguirre, Tess Fowler and Devaki Neogi (covers) Eisner Award and GLAAD Media Award-nominated[23]
BLACK Kwanza Osajyefo Jamal Igle, Khary Randolph (covers) Designed by Tim Smith III
The Skeptics Tini Howard Devaki Neogi, Jen Hickman
4 Kids Walk into A Bank Matthew Rosenberg Tyler Boss
The Forevers Curt Pires Eric Pfeiffer
No Angel Eric Palicki and Adrianne Palicki Ari Syahrazad, Jean-Paul Csuka
2017 The Dregs Zac Thompson and Lonnie Nadler Eric Zawadzki
Space Riders: Galaxy of Brutality (volume 2) Fabian Rangel Jr Alexis Ziritt
Last Song Holly Interlandi Zoe Chevat
Beautiful Canvas Ryan K Lindsay Sami Kivela, Sami Kivela, Sami Kivela, Triona Farrell
Calexit Matteo Pizzolo Amancay Nahuelpan, Tyler Boss
2018 The Wilds Vita Ayala Emily Pearson
Billionaire Killers Matteo Pizzolo Lauren Affe, Soo Lee Young Terrorists spin-off
BLACK [AF]: Widows And Orphans Kwanza Osajyefo Tim Smith III BLACK spin-off
BLACK [AF]: Devil's Dye Vita Ayala Liana Kangas, Maika Sozo BLACK spin-off
Emmie-X Matteo Pizzolo Carlos Granda, Soo Lee (covers) Calexit spin-off
2019 Space Riders: Vortex of Darkness (volume 3) Fabian Rangel Jr Alexis Ziritt
2021 Tomorrow's Ashes Matt Pizzolo Anna Wieszczyk, Jen Bartel and Tess Fowler (covers)
Alice In Leatherland Iolanda Zanfardino Elisa Romboli, Elisa Romboli
WHITE Kwanza Osajyefo Jamal Igle, Khary Randolph, Tim Smith, Derwin Roberson Sequel to BLACK
TBA Sinatoro Grant Morrison Vanesa del Rey Announced in 2014
Our Work Fills The Pews Vita Wong and Matthew Rosenberg Yasmin Liang Announced in 2016,[24] "retooling" as of 2019[25]
Run for the Shadows J.M. DeMatteis and Matt Pizzolo Josh Hood Announced in 2016[26]
We Can Never Go Home (volume 2) Matthew Rosenberg and Patrick Kindlon Josh Hood


  1. ^ Our Publishers
  2. ^ aubin (February 15, 2013). "Brett Gurewitz helps launch Black Mask Studios".
  3. ^ MacDonald, Heidi (February 15, 2013). "New publisher/distro Black Mask Studios debuts with Moore, Lloyd, RZA and more". Comics Beat.
  4. ^ "Black Mask Studios; New Comic Publisher". ICv2. March 22, 2012.
  5. ^ Thill, Scott (March 20, 2012). "Black Mask Studios' 'Old Punks' Occupy Comics, Creators Rights". Wired.
  6. ^ "Black Mask Studios to distribute Occupy Comics anthology". Comic Book Resources. Robot 6. May 20, 2012.
  7. ^ Kit, Borys (February 14, 2013). "'Watchmen,' 'Walking Dead' and '30 Days of Night' Creators Help Launch Black Mask Comics". The Hollywood Reporter.
  8. ^ Thill, Scott (June 12, 2012). "Maus Creator Art Spiegelman Joins Occupy Comics' Growing Chorus". Wired.
  9. ^ Thill, Scott (September 17, 2012). "See David Lloyd's Ballsy, Bullish Cover of New Occupy Comics". Wired.
  10. ^ Webb, Charles (February 15, 2013). "Black Mask Studios: Two Comic Creators And A Punk Musician Announce Their Own Comic Company". MTV.
  11. ^ Kit, Borys (October 7, 2014). "Grant Morrison's 'Sinatoro' Getting the Comic Book Treatment From Black Mask Studios". The Hollywood Reporter.
  12. ^ White, Brett (October 7, 2014). "Image's "Five Ghosts" In Development at Syfy". Comic Book Resources.
  13. ^ Yamato, Jen (November 6, 2014). "'Godkiller' Post-Apocalyptic Comic Bound For New Animated Trilogy". Deadline Hollywood.
  14. ^ "Wes Craven to Adapt Steve Niles' Sci-Fi Horror Comic 'The Disciples' for TV (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  15. ^ "Imperative Entertainment to Adapt Black Mask Comic 'Mayday' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  16. ^ "Comic-Con: Chris and Paul Weitz Team With Grant Morrison for 'Sinatoro' TV Series (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  17. ^ "Adrianne Palicki, LGBT Bounty Hunters Highlight Black Mask's Comic Slate (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  18. ^ "'Calexit' Comic Book Pits California Against the President". The Hollywood Reporter. February 20, 2017. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  19. ^ Pizzolo, Matt (February 15, 2013). "Black Mask: The Spring Collection" Archived February 19, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. Black Mask Studios.
  20. ^ Pizzolo, Matt (October 7, 2014). "Welcome to Black Mask 2.0" Archived February 7, 2015, at the Wayback Machine. Black Mask Studios.
  21. ^ "Adrianne Palicki, LGBT Bounty Hunters Highlight Black Mask's Comic Slate (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 14, 2016.
  22. ^ gmanfromheck (November 7, 2015). "Matthew Rosenberg". ComicVine.
  24. ^ Pizzolo, Matteo. "Our Work Fills The Pews". Black Mask Studios. Retrieved September 11, 2021.
  25. ^ Ennis, Tricia. "Vita Ayala Is the Changing Face of Comics, and They're Here to Stay". Syfy Wire. Retrieved September 11, 2021.
  26. ^ Johnston, Rich. "Run For The Shadows By JM DeMatteis, Matt Pizzolo And Josh Hood Joins Black Mask's Class Of 2016". Bleeding Cool. Avatar Press. Retrieved September 11, 2021.