Update: DC’s Daniel Cherry III and Ally’s Andrea Brimmer shared their views on the program during a video interview at Ad Week. Take a look below.
Online financial institution Ally is tapping into the DC Universe to help support various comic book creators in a new marketing campaign that begins this weekend.
Launched at the DC FanDome virtual event on October 16, the Ally-sponsored Milestone Initiative is part of an agreement between WarnerMedia, DC and the comic book publisher owned by Black Milestone Media.
It will allow members of the next generation of artists and storytellers of color to attend a week-long training session at the DC offices in California, followed by an eight-week online course. The initiative is the first program of Next Generation DC, a talent recruitment and development project from the famous superhero publisher created to address under-representation in the comic book industry.
“For many black and diverse artists and writers, Milestone is part of their comic book DNA,” said Daniel Cherry III, senior vice president and general manager of DC, “and we’re grateful to partner with Ally in helping these new voices to be heard in besides adding to Milestone’s legacy.
Black comic book creators currently only make up 4.9% of writers and 3.4% of artists, while Asian and Latin creators aren’t doing much better, according to data from career site Zippia cited by WarnerMedia and DC.
“We really have this passion for creativity and creating spaces for diverse creators,” said Andrea Brimmer, Director of Marketing and Public Relations at Ally. “So when DC and WarnerMedia approached us with this opportunity, we thought it was a great way to expand our efforts that we’ve already made to create new spaces for people of color. “
WarnerMedia unveiled the Milestone Initiative during its initial presentation to advertisers this spring as a way to provide a platform for “black stories and the black imagination to flourish.” The initiative grew out of Milestone Media, best known for the creation of Milestone Comics, which served as a testing ground for black comic book creators in the 1990s. Likewise, Milestone Initiative aims to provide mentoring, tools and access to emerging writers and artists of color trying to gain a foothold in the comic book industry.
Ally is the first brand to enter into an agreement with WarnerMedia as part of this initiative.