Star Wars comes in strong with April comic sales. All four franchise books were in the top 10, with Star Wars #4 the month’s comic shop bestseller.
A couple of quick updates this morning: We’ve learned at Celebration that Alexander Freed will be writing Battlefront: Twilight Company, the November novel from Del Rey.
(The actual Battlefront game was this morning’s big draw, but more on how that’s relevant to us later. )
Marvel has been dropping their news ahead of their panel as well. First we learned that a Lando Calrissian limited series will follow Princess Leia. It’ll be from Charles Soule and Alex Maleev and issue #1 comes out in July.
And this morning, some Shattered Empire details. The limited series will be written by (as we knew) Greg Rucka, with art and cover from Marco Chechetto. (Is the Phil Noto piece just a variant?)
The Del Rey and Marvel panels are tomorrow, so no doubt we’ll learn more then.
Princess Leia #1 was March’s best-selling comic. Not best-selling Star Wars comic, not best-selling Marvel comic, best-selling comic of the month. Star Wars #3 and Princess Leia #2 also made the top 5, with Darth Vader #3 in the top 10.
We learned today that Del Rey will be setting up in Booth 1211 for Celebration… And they have lots of treats. First and foremost, there’s a 2015 Book Sampler with a cover by Phil Noto. The cover clearly teases Lords of the Sith and Dark Disciple… But what else could be in it? Dare we hope for a peek at Aftermath? Chuck Wendig just finished the first draft the other day, but stranger things have happened… And note how the poster image carefully covers big chunks of the timeline… Battlefront? A novelization, even? (And for those not attending, the last sampler was put online for free, so chances are that’ll happen again.)
There are some nifty book cover pins, too. (Don’t forget Saturday is Aaron Allston Tribute Day!) There’s also a schedule of signings. Authors listed include John Jackson Miller, Christie Golden, James Luceno, Drew Karpyshyn, Alan Dean Foster, James Kahn and Michael Kogge.
Del Rey will also be handing out some Marvel stuff… Does Marvel not have a booth of their own? Curious.
Naturally, it was Florian of Jedi Bibliothek who discovered the writer of Marvel’s first entry in Journey to The Force Awakens, Shattered Empire. A catalog lists Greg Rucka, who had an influential run writing Batman (among many others.)
Rucka was already on the JTFA slate with the Han-centric YA novel Smuggler’s Run.
We don’t know much about Shattered Empire overall; though the series was announced with a Phil Noto cover image, the catalog lists the book’s artist as TBD. It also lists it will be a trade paperback, not individual issues, though the original announcement calls it ‘an event series.’ A series of trades? At this point, I fully expect we won’t get a formal announcement until Marvel’s panel at Celebration Anaheim.
A former Marvel employee on Disney’s desired demographics (aka not girls and women) and what we can do about it. None of us are ignorant that Disney bought Marvel and Lucasfilm for further access the ‘boys market,’ but this is a nice overview of how licensing works, and who we have to contact to show there is a demand for more Gamora, Black Widow and Princess Leia merchandise.
Marvel’s Star Wars to get a new artist with #8. Jon Cassaday’s last issue on the comic will be #6, with Stuart Immonen coming on the book with #8. Issue #7 will feature a “very special guest artist.”
The new Star Wars Insider, #156, will also be out in the wild.
We’ll have more Darth Vader and Princess Leia comics in the coming weeks, and our next novel is the paperback release of John Jackson Miller’s A New Dawn on the 31st.
Preview Kanan: The Last Padawan #1 A peek inside Marvel’s first prequel era comic.