Crime pays for Eoin Colfer as film deal boosts cash

Ireland’s best-selling children’s author, Eoin Colfer, enjoyed a boost from his major Disney movie deal last year with profits at his firm jumping by more than €155,000 to more than €1.82m.

The figures show crime — at least of the fictional sort — continues to pay for the former Wexford primary school teacher, who has sold more than 25m books, translated into 44 languages around the globe, about the adventures of his teenage criminal mastermind, Artemis Fowl.

In July 2013, Disney added to Colfer’s coffers when they confirmed that the adventures of Artemis Fowl are to be made into a movie with Hollywood actor Robert de Niro on board as executive producer on the project.

Colfer published the eighth and final book in the Artemis Fowl series in 2012 and the new accounts reflect the financial success of the final instalment.

They show that the married father-of-two’s Artemis Fowl Ltd cash pile increased by more than €100,000 from €1.738m to €1.843m in the 12 months to the end of December, with accumulated profits increasing by €156,000 from €1.669m to €1.825m.

However, the jump in profits and cash is smaller than the huge €946,226 hike in profits the firm enjoyed in 2012. The firm’s cash pile increased by €919,000 the same year.

The 2013 accounts confirm that the firm’s revenues are generated through amounts received for book advances and royalties during the year.

Colfer resigned from his teaching post after the success of the debut Artemis Fowl in 2001 and the earnings he now enjoys far outstrip what he would be earning as a teacher with the salary scale of a primary school teacher after Government pay cuts ranging from €30,904 to €59,359.

The documents show that Colfer’s wife, Jackie Colfer, also acts as a director of Artemis Fowl Ltd.

The 49-year-old author has described the series as “Die Hard with fairies”. The initial print run for the final Artemis book, titled The Last Guardian, ran to 1m copies and it won Children’s Book of the Year at the 2012 Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards in the senior category.


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