Take Her Away: Disney / Marvel To Take Star Wars License From Dark Horseon December 20, 2012 at 8:40 pm
A long time ago (sometime around 1986) in a galaxy far, far away (presuming you are reading this from somewhere in Andromeda, and if you are: please send flying cars and jetpacks), Marvel Comics decided, four years after Return of The Jedi had left theaters and with enthusiasm for Star Wars dwindling after years of no word of a fourth movie forthcoming, to stop publishing Star Wars comic books.
A less long time ago (figure around 1991), writer Timothy Zahn published a Star Wars novel named Heir to The Empire, which rumor had it was authorized by George Lucas and reflective of the plots originally planned for the Star Wars Episode VII movie promised to us back around 1980. The book and its sequels were a hit, and revitalized interest in Star Wars for the first time in years. And by the end of that year, we walked into comic stores to find Dark Empire, the first new Star Wars comic book in about five years, written by Tom Veitch and drawn by Cam Kennedy, expanding on Zahn’s work and published by Dark Horse Comics. This began a run of Dark Horse-published Star Wars comics that have spanned two decades, three new Star Wars movies, and, depending on your point of view and impulse control, four to six George Lucas childhood rapes (depending on if you count the non-Genndy Tartakovsky Clone Wars cartoons.
A couple weeks ago, in Los Angeles, Disney bought Lucasfilm. And you might remember that three years ago, Disney bought Marvel Comics. And yet, to this day, Dark Horse publishes several Star Wars comic books (including reprints of many of the old Marvel issues). But hey, that’s okay! What could possibly happen? I mean, look at Star Wars itself! When Senator Palpatine took over the Senate, everything stayed a-ok and the status quo was maintained, right?
The Suits in the know have determined that no new contracts will be given to Dark Horse after the current ones expire. So all new projects after 2013 will be handled internally by Marvel.
Ah, well. According to Blue Sky Disney, Dark Horse’s current license contracts for Star Wars expire by the end of next year, after which, any and all new Star Wars comics will be published by Marvel. Which is a concept that might excite some people; after all, Marvel has writers like Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction and Jason Aaron under exclusive contract, and those guys would be awesome writing a Star Wars comic, right? Well, maybe. First, someone needs to convince one of those guys to write a Star Wars comic – remember: Dark Horse has long-standing and close relationships with Frank Miller, Mike Mignola and Matt Wagner, and none of those guys were kicking the door down to write Star Wars over the past 20 years.
And also, Bendis, Fraction, Aaron, et al are all good writers. Hell, Bendis spends half his issues making sure his people talk in a naturalistic fashion, whereas script-wise, Star Wars is most famous for Harrison Ford’s declaration of: “You might be able to type this shit, George, but you sure as hell can’t say it.” If Bendis wrote Star Wars, Han Solo would have shot first… but not before spending a couple of double-page spreads saying something like, “Greedo? Aw, man… Look – look, I, I, I, I have Jabba’s money, okay? But, but – just wait a second, okay? Are you okay? You look a little green – ha! Get it? You’re Gree- okay, fine, fine… whadda mean, ‘Where’s my hand?’”
If Bendis wrote Star Wars, it wouldn’t be too hard to wait for the next movie… because we’d still be watching the last one.
(via Blue Sky Disney)