Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Xeric Foundation and Ninja Turtles

Seeing commercials for “TMNT,” the new animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles flick that opens March 23, I’ve wondered: How might the Hollywood blockbuster benefit the Northampton-based Xeric Foundation?

Ninja Turtles co-creator Peter Laird, who lives near Northampton, created the Xeric Foundation with a $1 million investment in 1991. Interest from that endowment – which Xeric grants director Kendall Clark tells me has about doubled since – funds the foundation’s grants totaling some $120,000 annually to western Massachusetts nonprofits and to self-publishing comics artists from the United States and Canada. The comics grants have been a major force in encouraging independent, ambitious comics.

So will money from the film go to the foundation? “Only indirectly, if needed,” Clark says. And right now with the endowment doing well, she says, it doesn’t seem needed.


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