Born on August 28, 1917, Jack Kirby taught himself to draw when he was a young boy in New York, taking the “Flash Gordon” newspaper comic strip and other sources as his inspirations. He enrolled in the prestigious Pratt Institute but dropped out on his first day, largely due to the financial strain of tuition on his family.
Kirby’s first job as a professional illustrator was as an in-betweener at the Max Fleisher studios, where he helped with “Popeye” cartoons. After working for Lincoln Newspaper Syndicate as a cartoonist and then for Victor Fox as a comic book illustrator, Kirby began drawing for Joe Simon at Timely Comics Company in 1941.
Timely had only two stars—the Human Torch and the Sub-Mariner. Simon and Kirby created a number of new characters, the most notable of which was Captain America. From there, Simon and Kirby went to work for the Detective Comics Company (known as DC), where they created “The Newsboy Legion” and “The Boy Commandos,” both of which fought the evil Axis powers in their adventures.
In the late 1950s, Kirby was doing much of his work for Marvel Comics. In 1961, with Marvel’s head writer and editor, Stan Lee, Kirby helped create the “Fantastic Four,” which inaugurated a new era of Marvel superheroes. In the years to come, Kirby helped illustrate and generate stories for “The Incredible Hulk,” “The Mighty Thor,” “The Avengers,” X-Men,” and more. Often Kirby’s role was to draw the first issue to get it off to a good start, and then let other artists at Marvel take over from there.
In 1970, Kirby resigned from Marvel and began working for National-DC comics as an artist, writer, and editor. At DC, Kirby helped generate the “Fourth World” series, spawning a whole new universe of modern mythology. Kirby returned to Marvel in 1975 but left for the last time in 1978. He passed away in 1994.
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Snapshot: 'Artists and Models' (c.1953), by Jack KirbyFinancial Times, October 17th
Introduction page illustrated by Jack Kirby. 'The Thing on Sputnik 4' illustrated by Jack Kirby. “Lunar Trap” illustrated by Jack Kirby. 'Island in the Sky' illustrated by Jack Kirby and Al Williamson. 'The Face on Mars' illustrated by Jack Kirby and...Read more
The Settlement Received By Jack Kirby's Estate From Marvel And Disney For ...Bleeding Cool News, October 13th
jack_kirby__span At the New York Comic Con, one of the oft-discussed stories was the settlement between the estate of the late Jack Kirby, co-creator of the Hulk, Fantastic Four, Avengers, Captain America, X-Men, Silver Surfer and so much, represented...Read more
Superheroes For Hire Marvel Comics And Jack Kirby Heirs Settle Character ...Mondaq News Alerts (registration), October 11th
These traditions played a role in the recently settled dispute between Marvel Comics and the heirs of Jack Kirby, the artist who drew and created or co-created many of Marvel's most famous characters in the late 1950s and early 1960s, including the...Read more
Dust finally settles in the Marvel-Jack Kirby CaseSinapse Blog (blog), October 9th
Jack Kirby, popularly called the King of Comics, much adored by comic fans all over for his participation in the creation of characters such as the Fantastic Four, The Incredible Hulk, The Mighty Thor, Spider Man, Iron Man, The X-Men, The Avengers, Ant...Read more
Kurt Busiek Breaks Down the Marvel/Jack Kirby Legal BattleComic Book Resources, October 1st
Kurt Busiek -- a creator best known for his work on series like "Astro City," "Marvels," "JLA/Avengers" and many more -- is also something of an expert when it comes to the Marvel/Jack Kirby estate legal battle that was recently settled before it went...Read more
High-stakes comic book battle comes to an endCBS News, September 30th
Who owns Iron Man and Captain America? Is it Walt Disney (DIS) subsidiary Marvel Entertainment, which has made big profits from the characters in comic books and movies, or is it comic book legend Jack Kirby, who helped create the characters decades ...Read more
Marvel, Jack Kirby Estate Settlement Brings End to High-Stakes Copyright BattleBillboard, September 26th
On Friday, Marvel ended a long and bitter feud with the estate of comic book legend Jack Kirby, announcing a settlement just days before the U.S. Supreme Court had scheduled a conference to discuss whether to take up a case with potentially billions on...Read more
Marvel & Jack Kirby Heirs Settle Legal Battle Ahead Of Supreme Court ShowdownDeadline.com, September 26th
Just days before the Supreme Court was set to take the matter into conference, Marvel and the family of Jack Kirby have settled their long running legal dispute over the comic legend's rights to the characters he created or co-created. Here's their...Read more