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The history, collected art and comic stories of the mascot & rascally rodent representative of the legendary FantaCo Enterprises Inc.
The history, collected art and comic stories of the mascot & rascally rodent representative of the legendary FantaCo Enterprises Inc.
65 backers pledged $7,501 to help bring this project to life.
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About

The Complete Smilin' Ed Comics by Raoul Vezina & Tom Skulan

$7,501

65

THe actual cover of the book smilin' at ya!!
THe actual cover of the book smilin' at ya!!

Why Pledge to Print This Book of Raoul Vezina’s art?

My name is Maria Vezina and I am the sister of Raoul Vezina, the artist and musician who had an untimely death on November 13, 1983. My brother was just 35 years old. The purpose of this book is to share his talent which did not have a chance to fully influence the comic art world or to reach the public in a way that it deserved. Everyone who knew my brother spoke highly about his creativity and affect on others with his incredible ability to draw. Raoul was known for his generosity of spirit and heart. This book is a way to acknowledge Raoul's natural talent and to give him the chance he never had to publish all his characters, his animal art, his stories, his unique sense of humor and satire. He will live on with the publication of this book.


 
Raoul Vezina in front of the FantaCo store 1980.
Raoul Vezina in front of the FantaCo store 1980.

My brother was born with an inherent ability to draw,  He was actually a prodigy although I don’t think anyone recognized it at the time. It is only during this time of reflection that I, myself, have come to realize it. Smilin' Ed Smiley is my brother’s signature work and his most publicized effort; now over 30 years old. By supporting this book with your pledge you will give Raoul Vezina – artist, musician, and dear friend to many – a second chance to share his artistic vision with the old and for the first time, with a new generation of comic lovers.

Thank you for your support ~

Maria L. Vezina

Over 35 years have elapsed since this first appearance of the then unnamed "rat in a space helmet" I asked Raoul to draw for the first FantaCo store flyer in August 1978.  Later that same year Raoul would name the character "Smilin' Ed Smiley".
Over 35 years have elapsed since this first appearance of the then unnamed "rat in a space helmet" I asked Raoul to draw for the first FantaCo store flyer in August 1978. Later that same year Raoul would name the character "Smilin' Ed Smiley".

“Raoul and I had so much fun writing the stories and doing the voices of the characters on radio commercials, that it’s a real pleasure to share the fun with all of you. I only wish that Raoul were here today, watching this project come to fruition. He would have loved it.”

— Tom Skulan

Wonderful early Smilin' Ed Smiley illustration by Raoul Vezina.
Wonderful early Smilin' Ed Smiley illustration by Raoul Vezina.

This large 160 page trade paperback book will include ALL of the Smilin' Ed Smiley stories, including ones that never appeared in the 4 issue Smilin' Ed Comic series. Ed's first time ever origin will be revealed as well as many pages of never before published art, including 16 pages in full color. The book is so jam packed we had trouble fitting it all in!!

The entire book has already been designed. It is complete and ready to be printed when this campaign is successful. So tweet, Facebook, blog, link, message, email and text all your friends to join YOU in helping US!

Thanks everyone~

Tom Skulan

Special thanks to Richard and Wendy Pini for always being there over the decades. And special thanks also go to Marc Arsenault who just never EVER gave up. Thank you Marc!

Thanks to Jim Brown for his insight and suggestions, Kaz Sanchez, Maria Vezina, Roger Green and Phil Sawyer for their assistance and to Bill Anderson who really stepped up to the plate above and beyond in many helpful ways.

And finally to my friend of 50 years, Stephen Paul Connor, who agreed to create & design the Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) even though his schedule was completely full. You rock Steve!

Smilin' Ed Smiley lives on in this spectacular painting by Raoul Vezina.
Smilin' Ed Smiley lives on in this spectacular painting by Raoul Vezina.

The Smilin' Ed Smiley character was created by Raoul Vezina and Tom Skulan. The rights are owned jointly by Maria Vezina and Tom Skulan. Smilin' Ed Smiley is TM and copyright 2014 by Maria Vezina and Tom Skulan. All rights reserved. No reproduction of any kind is allowed without express written permission of both rights holders.

Risks and challenges

This book is already 99%+ completed. It has a full promotion from Amazon.com and a variety of other book dealers, stores and distributors. Although totally unforeseen circumstances could arise, I feel they are minimal.
However, should any setbacks occur such as publishing time taking longer than anticipated, I will immediately update every person who has pledged.
I have published over 200 comics, magazines and books and have the experience to get the job done and done right.
Each person who has worked on this project has over 30 years experience in publishing. All of us want to produce the best collectibles possible. Items to cherish and pass on.

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Due to the long history of the character Smilin' Ed Smiley and FantaCo Enterprises, many reproduced ads and signage display obsolete addresses and phone numbers, We ask that you DO NOT write or call to any address or number shown in our reproduced materials. They are being depicted for historical purposes only. It is not our intent to have any readers or pledges use the old contact information at any time for any reason. If you need to contact us simply use the contact form accompanying this campaign, Thank you for understanding.

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Should we exceed our goal of $7500 we will use the funds in the following ways:

1. Create even more spectacular awards by upgrading the materials and printing. We may even throw in some bonus awards if we have the extra funds to create them!! (We have several in mind....)
2. Pay our designers and artists an actual living wage so that they can take care of their families, mortgages, food and other necessities.
3. Print more copies of the trade paperback edition for everyone to enjoy!

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Get in on the fun! Your pledge of $10 or more will receive a limited edition Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) set of nine (9) cards. These spectacular cards have been designed by the famous painter and illustrator, Stephen Paul Connor and produced ONLY for pledges. The cards are printed on heavy stock, in full color, with designs featuring Raoul Vezina's Smilin' Ed art on the front and remembrances by FantaCo Founder and Smilin' Ed Co-Creator Tom Skulan on the reverse side.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Grab the gusto! Your pledge of $25 or more will receive the Level 1 pledge gift along with an early bird digital PDF copy of the entire book. You will be entitled to read and enjoy before it is available for sale anywhere.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Throw the book at me! Your pledge of $50 or more will receive all items from pledge Level 1 & 2, plus one (1) additional Limited Edition ATC 9-card set and one (1) trade paperback edition of the book, autographed by FantaCo Founder and Smilin’ Ed Co-Creator Tom Skulan.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    I’m talkin’ here! Your pledge of $100 or more will receive all items from pledge Level 1, 2 & 3; a total of three (3) Limited Edition ATC 9-card sets plus an additional Special Edition ATC #10 autographed by Founder and Co-Creator, Tom Skulan, Raoul Vezina’s Estate Executor, Maria Vezina, Card Designer Stephen Paul Connor, Book Designer/artist, Bill Anderson; a second autographed copy of the trade paperback book; and your name listed on the “Acknowledgements” page.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Up where the air is rare. Your pledge of $500 or more will receive all items from pledge Levels 1-4; plus two (2) autographed copies of the trade paperback book; and your name listed on the “Acknowledgements” page; a total of four (4) Limited Edition ATC 9-card sets; a total of two (2) Special Edition ATC #10 signed by FantaCo Founder and Co-Creator, Tom Skulan, Raoul Vezina’s Estate Executor, Maria Vezina, Card Designer Stephen Paul Connor, Book Designer/artist, Bill Anderson; a digitally restored FantaCo store sign print of Smilin’ Ed (suitable for framing) that will be autographed and numbered by Co-Creator and FantaCo Founder, Tom Skulan. Additionally, you will receive the complete vintage 4-issue set of the original Smilin' Ed Smiley comic book series. Each comic will be autographed by Co-Creator, writer and FantaCo Founder, Tom Skulan.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    And then there were ten. Your pledge of $1000 or more will receive all items from pledge Levels 1-5 (see above); two (2) autographed & numbered copies of the extremely limited hardcover editions; a total of five (5) Limited Edition ATC 9-card sets; a total of five (5) Special Edition ATC #10 signed by FantaCo Founder and Co-Creator, Tom Skulan, Raoul Vezina’s Estate Executor, Maria Vezina, Card Designer Stephen Paul Connor, Book Designer/artist, Bill Anderson; an additional digitally restored FantaCo store sign print (total of two); an additional vintage 4-issue set of the original Smilin' Ed Smiley comic book series(total of two complete sets). Each set will be autographed by Co-Creator, writer and FantaCo Founder, Tom Skulan. Also included in this pledge level, you will receive a rare collectors reprint, on ultra high quality paper, of the very first appearance of the Smilin’ Ed character in the “Coming Soon” FantaCo advertisement designed by Tom Skulan and originally illustrated by Raoul Vezina in August 1978.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Give me some credit!!
    The Smilin' Ed character has been a part of the lives of thousands of people around the globe. Many of those young fans have gone on to become directors, editors, judges, lawyers, wall street tycoons and billionaire industrialists.
    The two individuals pledging $5,000 or more will have the coveted title of Co-Producer and a firsthand look into the production of this book. Your pledge will ensure the success of this endeavor and entitle you to Co-Producer credit in the digital and print materials of this Kickstarter project. Additionally, you will receive digital galleys of the book for your private collection; five (5) autographed & numbered hardcover books; eight (8) each of the Limited Edition ATC 9-card sets and Special Edition ATC #10 signed by FantaCo Founder and Co-Creator, Tom Skulan, Raoul Vezina’s Estate Executor, Maria Vezina, Card Designer Stephen Paul Connor, Book Designer/artist, Bill Anderson; a collectors reprint of the 1978 Smilin’ Ed character in the “Coming Soon” FantaCo advertisement; and a personalized, thirty-minute phone interview with FantaCo Founder and Smilin’ Ed Co-Creator, Tom Skulan.

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Funding period

- (30 days)