Albany, IN—May 4, 2018: Garfield, a superstar, and pop-culture icon, celebrates his 40th birthday on June 19, 2018, with a new book, a movie in development, another TV series, and enough licensing business to keep the portly puss in lasagna for another 40 years. Jim Davis, Garfield’s creator, will celebrate the birthday with the launch of Age Happens: Garfield Hits the Big 4-0 (Ballantine Books) with a book signing at Denver Comic Con, June 15-17. Incidentally, the foreword was written by lifelong Garfield lover Lin-Manuel Miranda, the Pulitzer Prize-winning creator of Hamilton. The rest of the world will lift a supersized cupcake in his honor at events and exhibits in Hong Kong, India, China, Brazil, Japan, Singapore, Germany, and the Balkans.
Indeed, Garfield’s mirth and girth are spread far and wide — his paws are in virtually every corner of the world with licensing, publishing, or syndication in 111 counties — and his various entertainment mediums including feature films, TV shows, theme parks, mobile games and apps, stage shows, and even a musical. But that won’t stop him from hogging the spotlight for years to come. Later this year, an all-new animated series of 120 30-second shorts titled Garfield Originals will be released for digital and broadcast, and Garfield’s original TV series from the 80s and 90s, Garfield and Friends, will make a comeback fully remastered in HD and UHD. A fully-animated Garfield movie is in development with Alcon Entertainment. Garfield’s footprint in the digital realm includes social channels, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram,, and websites www.garfield.com and professorgarfield.org, a free educational portal for students of all ages. An estimated 85 million people have also downloaded Garfield apps and games, which includes Garfield’s newest, Garfield Snacktime.
Internationally, Garfield is having fun with Six Flags theme parks in China, having been named the signature character in the children’s areas of two new parks. A Garfield debit card was recently released by Icici Bank in India, and GarfieldEats, a new food delivery restaurant with an entertaining app, is opening in Dubai. In 2019, a Garfield-themed educational and recreational farm will open in China offering a hands-on agricultural experience for kids and families.
Stateside, Garfield’s gone to the dogs – that is, he’s featured on Bobs from Skechers line of casual shoes with a portion of the proceeds going to the Best Friends Animal Society. Also this month, Garfield is in cahoots with The Hundreds, a classic Californian streetwear brand and media platform dedicated to Global Street Culture. He’s also the headliner of a series of virtual runs. Yes, even Garfield will run when there’s food involved – Garfield's’ Donut Run, an event by Run With Character, is the first of several virtual and actual runs planned for 2018.
Born on the newspaper comics pages on June 19, 1978, GARFIELD first appeared in just 41 U.S. newspapers. One of those was the Chicago Sun-Times who decided to drop the strip after a couple of months. Over 1300 angry readers responded by letter and phone demanding the strip be reinstated. It was, and after that, sales took off, eventually resulting in GARFIELD being the most widely syndicated comic strip in the world (Guinness World Records), appearing in over 2100 newspapers with a readership estimated at 200,000,000 each day.
The creation of cartoonist Jim Davis, GARFIELD is a humorous strip centered on the lives of a quick-witted orange cat who loves lasagna, coffee, and his remote control; Jon Arbuckle, his owner; and Odie, a sweet but dumb dog. Andrews McMeel Syndication distributes the feature. Davis has had many successes with Garfield, including movies, TV shows, stage shows, merchandise, books, and more.( An estimated 200 million books have sold worldwide since Garfield’s inception.) His professional achievements include four Emmy Awards for Outstanding Animated Program, induction into the Licensing Hall of Fame (1998), and awards are from his peers in the National Cartoonist Society: Best Humor Strip (1981 and 1985), the Elzie Segar Award (1990), and the coveted Reuben Award (1990) for overall excellence in cartooning.
The success of the comic strip spawned an empire including movies, TV shows, stage shows,merchandise, books, and more. An estimated 200 million books have sold worldwide since Garfield’s inception.
About Paws, Inc.
Cartoonist Jim Davis’ company, Paws, Inc., located near Albany, Indiana, was founded in 1981 to handle the creative end of the Garfield licensing business. Today, Paws is the sole owner of all copyrights and trademarks for the Garfield property and controls not only the creative angle of the fat cat’s flourishing empire, but also the licensing, marketing, and brand management of Garfield and the Garfield characters.