IDW was formed by entertainment executives and comic book artists Ted Adams, Alex Garner, Kris Oprisko, and Robbie Robbins. The goal of the fledgling company was to build a strong client base and work on projects they enjoyed, ranging from movies, to comic books and trading cards, to name a few. Services that IDW initially provided included character design, conceptual artwork, trading card games, online and print style guides, and of course, comic books.
IDW’s client base includes: Activision, BBC, Cartoon Network, Electronic Arts, Microsoft, Simon & Schuster, Upper Deck, and various movie studios.
The first title published by IDW was the popular vampire series 30 Days of Night written by Steve Niles, which immediately started a bidding war between three major movie studios for the film rights. The company’s second series, Popbot, garnered two Spectrum Gold Awards.
Licensing deals followed soon after, building a strong readership and fan base with established characters from other medias. Titles included CSI, Underworld, The Shield, 24, Angel, and Ghostbusters. Along with TV and movie characters, IDW secured the rights for Transformers, G.I. Joe, Silent Hill, and Castlevania, among other video game.
In 2008 IDW acquired the license to BBC’s Doctor Who franchise, allowing two concurrent titles to be released, one focusing on colorized reprints from 1970-1980 from Doctor Who Magazine. The other title, Doctor Who: Provocateur was an original miniseries featuring the Tenth Doctor, and written by the TV series script writer Gary Russell. The success of the miniseries launched a follow up mini, a series of one-shots, and ultimately an ongoing series in 2009.
In 2009 IDW formed an imprint with EA Games, called EA Comics, to adapt the video game company’s library of titles, initially with Army of Two and Dragon Age.
Classic newspaper comic strips have also been collected and reprinted by IDW under the imprint Dean Mullaney’s Library of American Comics. These include the following:
Konami acquired the video game rights, and part ownership, of CVO: Covert Vampiric Operations.
In 2007 Columbia Pictures released an adaptation of 30 Days of Night, directed by David Slade (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse) and produced by Sam Raimi ( Spider-Man).
Dimension Films also has two movie deals in place with Steve Niles and IDW, for Wake the Dead and Hyde.
has optioned the rights for Steve Niles’ Aleister Arcane.