Image to Publish Raven Gregory's "The Gift" beginning in October

Official Press Release

[The Gift 7]ORANGE, CA -- 24 JUNE, 2004 -- Raven Gregory's THE GIFT has been selling out of comic shops, selling like crazy on ebay, and selling well enough to get the attention of Wizard Magazine. Beginning this October, the highly popular independent comic will be selling with the Image "I" branding each cover.

THE GIFT #8 will be the first issue published by Image Comics, and creator Raven Gregory couldn't be happier.

"This is a dream come true," says series creator and writer Gregory. "Ever since Image was created I've been a fan, and to get to play in the same pool as legends like McFarlane, Silvestri, Larsen, Lee, Liefeld, and Bendis is just about the coolest thing that could ever happen to a fanboy like me."

Emerging fan favorite Tyler Kirkham, who handles art on Top Cow's popular STRYKEFORCE revamp, is the artist on THE GIFT. Eisner-nominated colorist Jason Keith (EL CAZADOR) helps round out the creative team.

The story of THE GIFT follows the Ancient One, a mysterious being who bestows items of incredible power to normal everyday people. The personality of the recipient determines how they use their Gift.

"But the Gifts themselves have an almost monkey's paw effect," explains Gregory. "In that, just because these people are given these great powers doesn't necessarily mean that everything is going to turn out all right."

[The Gift 9]The larger story behind THE GIFT involves the Ancient One's motivations for bequeathing these Gifts. A series of small clues throughout the seemingly unrelated stories will eventually lead readers to the answer.

Image Comics publisher Erik Larsen says bringing THE GIFT to Image was only natural.

"The Gift is one of those rare cases where it's all there--a creator plops a book on your desk and all the pieces are in place--it's all working," says Larsen. "Raven Gregory came to us with his book--and it was already going great guns and it was building an audience and gaining momentum. He wanted to take his book to the next level and was enthusiastic about being part of Image comics."

"It's a good fit," Larsen concludes. "Keen-eyed readers will recognize artist Tyler Kirkham from the pages of Image's own STRYKEFORCE. The Gift was essentially an Image book without the Image 'I'--come October, that changes!"

Gregory has a message for his current fans, all the while realizing the move to Image provides him the chance to greatly expand on his already growing fan base.

"I'd like to say thanks to the fans and retailers who have supported the book. Without you guys this move to Image wouldn't be possible. Thank you. Now let's show the world what THE GIFT can really do."

For more inforamtion on THE GIFT, please visit www.thegiftcomic.com.

THE GIFT 1-5 are available from Overcast Comics in the July issue of Diamond Previews. THE GIFT #8 will be available from Image Comics in the August issue of Previews, and will go on sale this October.

Image Comics is a comics and graphic novels publisher formed in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Since that time, Image has gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. There are currently four partners in Image Comics (Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino), and Image is currently divided into three major houses (Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions and Image Central). Image comics and graphic novels cover nearly every genre, sub-genre and style imaginable, offering science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today.

Visit www.imagecomics.com for more information.

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