Raymond Leblanc (born May 22, 1915 – March 21, 2008) was a Belgian comic book publisher, film director and film producer, best known for publishing works such as The Adventures of Tintin by Hergé and Blake and Mortimer by Edgar P. Jacobs. He debuted, published, and promoted many of the most famous Franco-Belgian comics. Leblanc and his two partners created Le Lombard publishing, Tintin magazine, PubliArt advertising agency, and Belvision Studios.
|Born||22 May 1915|
|Died||21 March 2008 (aged 92)|
|The Adventures of Tintin and many others|
|Awards||Alph-Art d'Honneur prize (2003)|
Raymond Leblanc was a resistance fighter during the Second World War in the Mouvement National Royaliste (MNR) group. When the war ended in 1944, Leblanc set up new offices at 55 rue du Lombard, establishing his publishing house Le Lombard. Years later after Leblanc's retirement, he detailed in an interview the beginnings of the Tintin legacy. On the subject of creating a new magazine for young people, he said, "We thought this was an interesting idea, and started looking for a name. We ended up eventually with Tintin, Hergé’s comic book hero. Literally everyone knew that character at that moment. The question however was, where was Hergé?"
The Adventures of Tintin creator Hergé, in fact all at the collaborationist newspaper Le Soir, were out of a job and even denied the right to work.[a] Leblanc arranged a meeting with Hergé, understood his dilemma, and saw an opportunity. He offered to clear his name and, that settled, offered him a new publishing venue for The Adventures of Tintin: the opportunity to continue to serialise his title in Leblanc's new weekly 12-page, comics journal, Le journal de Tintin (Tintin magazine), the first project of Le Lombard. Hergé accepted, and in 1946, Belgian comics fans were treated, not only to the return of Tintin, but to the debut of many new Franco-Belgian comics on a weekly basis, some appearing in Hergé's signature ligne claire style.
The years 1954 and 1956 saw Leblanc launching two other creative ventures: the advertising agency PubliArt, a publicity division of Le Lombard using comics characters in its projects, and Belvision Studios, which produced short and full-length animated films for television and cinema. Belvision rose to become a major animation studio, producing such works as Hergé's Adventures of Tintin, Pinocchio in Outer Space, Tintin and the Temple of the Sun, Tintin and the Lake of Sharks (which he directed), and Les Voyages de Gulliver.
He received the Alph-Art d'Honneur prize in 2003 at the 30th annual Angoulême International Comics Festival, in Angoulême, France, for his contribution to the Franco-Belgian comics industry. (See photo of Leblanc accepting the honour, age 87.) Leblanc died aged 92 on March 21, 2008.
- Hergé had been sacked, arrested, cleared of charges, released, and then denied the right to work. The Adventures of Tintin serial had been interrupted near the end of The Seven Crystal Balls, on page 49; page 50 would be the first page published in Tintin magazine, eighteen months later.
- Thompson, Harry (1991). Tintin: Hergé and His Creation. London: John Murray Publishers Ltd. p. 173. ISBN 978-1-84854-672-1.
- "Tintin publisher Raymond Leblanc dies at 92". The Economic Times. 22 March 2008. Retrieved 24 March 2008.
- "'Tintin' Publisher Raymond Leblanc Dies at 92". ComicMix.com. Tertiary source. 22 March 2008. Retrieved 24 March 2008.
- "Tintin publisher Raymond Leblanc dies". CBC News. 22 March 2008. Retrieved 24 March 2008.
- "Angoulême 2003 : une remise des prix sous le signe de la bonne humeur" [Angoulême 2003: a prize under the sign of a good mood]. Auracan.com (in French). Belgium. 22 March 2008. Retrieved 24 March 2008.