Marvel is the latest company to temporarily furlough some of its employees. ComicBook.com has independently confirmed the House of Ideas has distributed notices to those affected by the move Friday morning; the furlough is expected to begin April 26th and it's unclear how long it will last. It's expected the furloughed employees will also fit in with Disney's previous sentiment of providing healthcare to its employees during the furlough, though regular salaried pay will not be distributed. Earlier this month, Walt Disney World furloughed around 43,000 employees while Disneyland reportedly furloughed an additional 30,000. It wasn't immediately clear how many Marvel employees have been affected by this furlough, nor the departments the furloughs impact most.
A direct result of the coronavirus pandemic and the economic recession it's caused, the comics community is currently in a state of perpetual flux. Early Friday, Diamond Comic Distributors — the lone such business is the industry — released a statement revealing the company had potential plans to kickstart its distribution once again in the middle of May. Diamond ceased its distribution of all new product towards the end of last month, effectively shutting down New Comic Book Days for the foreseeable future. This week was the third straight week single-issue funny books weren't available to comic shops.
"Although we are not yet on the other side, we are tracking COVID-19 developments daily and starting to see signs of the spread slowing in certain areas," Diamond's statement said. " Like you, we are thinking about and planning for when and how we will restart the shipping of new weekly product. We have been closely watching the news, listening to our retailer and publisher partners and considering the many points of view as we decide, as an industry, how to proceed."
Coincidentally enough, hours after Diamond's statement was sent out, DC announced it's releasing new comics on April 28th with a smaller offering that includes some second printings. "The new schedule is designed to allow each of you to begin ordering a limited amount of DC product at first, and then ease back into the number of books that represents a normal release schedule from DC when your business can accommodate it," the publisher said in a statement.
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