JENETTE KAHN is partnered with Adam Richman at Double Nickel Entertainment, the production company they co-founded in 2003. The company’s first film release was the thriller THE FLOCK, starring Richard Gere and Claire Danes. Their second is the world-wide hit GRAN TORINO, directed by and starring Clint Eastwood and the most successful movie of all Mr. Eastwood’s films.
Ms. Kahn formed Double Nickel following 27 years heading up DC Comics. At the age of 28, she became publisher of DC Comics, a division of Warner Bros. and Time Warner, and home to over 5000 characters, including Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman. Five years later, she became President and Editor-in-Chief of DC, and when its founder Bill Gaines died, President and Editor-in-Chief of MAD Magazine, as well. She was the youngest person in the company to become president of a division, and also the first woman.
Considered the doyenne of the comic book industry, and one of the most talented and respected women in the entertainment industry, Ms. Kahn is renowned for transforming comics from a children’s medium to a visually stylish and sophisticated art form for adults. Under her aegis, DC broke new ground with comic books and graphic novels, including The Dark Knight Returns, Constantine, Watchmen, Road to Perdition, A History of Violence, V for Vendetta, Sandman, Ronin and 100 Bullets, all of which have been made or are currently in development as feature films. Ms. Kahn also broke ground by championing and implementing extensive rights for creators in an industry where there were none.
Ms. Kahn oversaw the launch of the acclaimed Vertigo imprint, now in its 16th year, and also of Milestone Comics, a minority-founded and ethnically diverse line of comic books that DC published for several years (and from which Static Shock, the animated show on The WB, was developed). Ms. Kahn is also credited with reinventing the classic DC characters, overseeing in the process the death and rebirth of Superman, which was the largest-selling comic book series in DC’s 75-year history. In addition, under Ms. Kahn’s leadership, DC became known for pushing boundaries in subject matter by addressing issues of domestic violence, sexual preference, gun violence, homelessness, racism, and AIDS in the company’s mainstream titles.
Before joining DC Comics, Ms. Kahn created three groundbreaking magazines for young people. The original publication, KIDS, was entirely written and illustrated by and for children. Although KIDS was published in the early 70s, it tackled subjects that are relevant today: drug abuse, diversity, animal protection and the environment. Ms. Kahn's second magazine was Dynamite. Created for Scholastic Inc., it changed the fortunes of the company, becoming the most successful publication in its history and inspiring two similar periodicals for Scholastic: WOW and Bananas. Ms. Kahn followed with another magazine, Smash, for Xerox Education Publications.
President Reagan honored Ms. Kahn for her work on drug awareness, and she has been honored by the Clinton White House, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, the United Nations, and the Department of Defense for her work on landmines. The FBI honored Ms. Kahn for her efforts on gun control, as did former Governor Wilder of Virginia, who credited her with helping to pass stricter gun control legislation in his state. She has also been honored by the World Design Foundation for outstanding creative achievements. In addition, Ms. Kahn created The Wonder Woman Foundation in honor of Wonder Woman’s 40th Anniversary. In its three years of existence, the foundation gave out more than $350,000 in grants to women over 40 in categories that exemplified the inspirational characteristics of the DC heroine: women taking risks, women pursuing equality and truth, women striving for peace, women helping other women.
Ms. Kahn serves on the boards of Exit Art and Harlem Stage, Harlem’s Principal Center for the Performing Arts, and is an advisor to The Bill T. Jones Dance Company. She is a founding member of The Committee of 200, a nationwide forum of key women in business.
Kahn graduated Harvard with honors with a degree in Art History. Her first book, In Your Space, was published by Abbeville Press in the spring of 2002.