Comic Books & Graphic NovelsTelevision & Film

STAR WARS Returns to Marvel

In a move that surprises probably no one, Lucasfilm announced that Marvel Comics will once again publish the Star Wars comic books, starting in 2015.

When it was first announced that The Walt Disney Company had purchased Lucasfilm, many speculated that it would only be a matter of time before the license for comics would be taken from Dark Horse, which has been publishing Star Wars rather successfully for the past twenty years.

“Dark Horse Comics published exceptional Star Wars comics for over 20 years, and we will always be grateful for their enormous contributions to the mythos, and the terrific partnership that we had,” said Carol Roeder, director of Lucasfilm franchise publishing, Disney Publishing Worldwide.  “In 2015, the cosmic adventures of Luke, Han, Leia and Chewbacca will make the lightspeed jump back to Marvel, to begin a new age of adventures within the Star Wars universe.”

Marvel Star Wars 1Star Wars #1 was first published by the Marvel Comics Group in March 1977, and there was even a large-format adaptation of the trilogy included as part of the run. Many well-known names came and went during the run — Carmine Infantino, John Byrne, Terry Austin, Walt Simonson, Roy Thomas, Howard Chaykin, Cynthia Martin, just to name a few — and the license went to Dark Horse Comics in 1991.

The notable addition to the franchise at the time was the Dark Empire story, giving us a clone of Emperor Palpatine and a Luke Skywalker walking on the Dark Side. Since then, the Dark Horse Star Wars stories have won critical and fan acclaim.

“After a history of movie properties being poorly handled with little regard for execution and continuity, Dark Horse took a new approach, carefully choosing licenses and approaching them with excitement and creative energy,” said Dark Horse founder and publisher Mike Richardson. “Our goal was to create sequels and prequels to the films we loved, paying careful attention to quality and detail, essentially treating those films as though they were our own. Star Wars has been the crown jewel of this approach.”

Since Disney now owns both Lucasfilm and Marvel, fans figured it was only a matter of time before all of the property was brought in house.

“We here at Marvel could not be more excited to continue the publication of Star Wars comic books and graphic novels,” said Marvel Worldwide Publisher and President, Dan Buckley. “The perennial brand of Star Wars is one of the most iconic in entertainment history and we are honored to have the opportunity to bring our creative talent pool to continue, and expand Star Wars into galaxies far, far away.”

Might they publish a large format adaptation of Episode VII?

Jason P. Hunt

Jason P. Hunt (founder/EIC) is the author of the sci-fi novella "The Hero At the End Of His Rope". His short film "Species Felis Dominarus" was a finalist in the Sci Fi Channel's 2007 Exposure competition.

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