It wouldn’t be a Comic-Con International for Marvel Comics without a Cup O Joe panel, and so the publisher took the stage Saturday afternoon for their traditional fan Q&A session.
Joining Marvel CCO Joe Quesada were Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso, SVP of Development C.B. Cebulski, Editor Nick Lowe, writers Brian Michael Bendis and Dan Slott and Editor Jordan D. White.
The panel started with a quick teaser scene from “Iron Man/Captain America: Heroes United” -Â a sequel to the recent CGI original DVD movie starring Iron Man and the Hulk. The panelists then discussed the incoming “Marvel’s 75th Anniversary” one-shot which will feature a story adapting Stan Lee’s original prose Captain America story that got him his start at the company as drawn by Bruce Timm. Bendis will also contribute a new Jessica Jones story for the issue, which he said will explore something from the roots of the Marvel Universe.
The Marvel cosmic corner then got a spotlight as Bendis will be teaming with Ed McGuinness for a timely “Guardians of the Galaxy” story featuring the explanation for how team members like Peter Quill returned from the dead. “The question of how they could still all be alive in time for the movie has never been answered,” quipped Bendis, adding that for years Jeph Loeb wouldn’t let anyone else work with the artist, but now he was happy to be working with him.
Bendis will also see the release of a new “Uncanny X-Men” Annual #1 in November with artist Andrea Sorrentino focusing on the fate of Eva Bell in a story that the writer promised wills set up many ramifications for the X-Men universe moving forward.
With a fanfare of John Willaims music, Quesada then announced that -Â as expected -Â Marvel will soon do original Star Wars comics. The first of three ongoing series will be “Star Wars” by Jason Aaron and John Cassaday who joined the panel. The artist said that their story coming between “A New Hope” and “Empire” will be treated as big as its own movie.
Alonso said that the idea for the books was that Star Wars was coming home to Marvel – where it started as a licensed book in the late ’70s -Â and the publisher would be tapping their best talent to do the series, but also LucasFilm would be heavily involved to make the canon of the new comics as integral to the franchise as the incoming JJ Abrams movie.
White, the editor of the new Star Wars line, then announced “Star Wars: Darth Vader” by Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca. Taking place in the same time period as the other series, White said that this book explores how the arch-villain went from being the only survivor of the Battle of Yavin who was occasionally made fun of by other Imperial officers in “New Hope” to the most feared man in the galaxy in “Empire.” Cebulski added that Bobba Fett fans would want to watch this book.
The mini series of the Star Wars line will be “Star Wars: Princess Leia” by Mark Waid and Terry Dodson which will explore how the character embraces her role as a princess and leader after the explosion of her planet in the first movie. Alonso noted that the five-issue series will be the first in an ongoing run of Star Wars mini series. Read more about the books and see the first art on CBR right now.
Fan questions started on the Star Wars front with one reader wanting to know about Bobba Fett’s plans within the line. Aaron said while the prospects were exciting, they couldn’t go too far too fast with some elements of the later movies, but there are plans in place. Additionally, a reader wanted to know whether “Expanded Universe” characters like Mara Jade would ever show up. White said that was the choice of LucasFilm, but for now being set after the first movie meant they didn’t have to make the call on those later characters just yet.
Fans asked after a possible Mariah Hill solo series, to which Bendis said he loved the idea but sometimes also a character works better as part of an ensemble.
A young woman who was a fan of the Marvel movies but had a hard time finding where to start in the comics got a wide range of responses. Alonso suggested many All-New Marvel NOW launches. Cebulski said the new “Ms. Marvel” comic and “Runaways.” Cassaday said, “Don’t start with the Death of Archie.”
Quesada spoke briefly on the long road to getting “Miracleman” back in print including Marvel’s brief connection with Marvelman creator Mick Anglo before he died. “I know the team know is working painstakingly to make this process work,” he said of where the book is at now, however they declined to talk about Marvel’s relationship or agreements with “Original Writer” Alan Moore.
Asked after the plans for Angel in “All-New X-Men,” Bendis promised that the new issue out in two weeks focuses on Angel and X-23 exploring their relationship as Warren continues to avoid learning about the legacy of his older self Archangel.
Another reader asked if Marvel had any plans within its pushes for a more diverse Marvel U to focus on a transgender character. Alonso said yes, those discussions have been going on and may bear fruit soon.
The supposed cancelation of the X-Men circulating online came up. “We’re not canceling anything,” Alonso said to which Bendis said, “Thank God! I have A LOT of kids.” The writer added that he’s been hard at work planning a longterm plan for the franchise.
Slott spoke about the plans for Otto Octavius after Superior Spider-Man saying that where the villain’s brain went would be a major plotline through the “Spider-Verse” story while the villains body also has its own fate awaiting in the future.
Talk came back around to Star Wars as a fan wondered if any of the characters from the classic Marvel series -Â including Jakks the Bunny -Â would be used. Aaron joked that he would try everything he could to get the character past White’s notice to be included in the book.
Bendis told a fan that there are big plans for the Ultimate line that will be making people talk in about six months line. In the meantime, he’s planning the story of “The Trial of Hank McCoy” for the X-Men line exploring the many mistakes the genius mutant has made in recent time.
The panel also said that “Marvel Zombies” has been discussed lately for a return in some unexpected ways.
A fan wanted Dazzler to get her own solo series again, to which Bendis replied “The X-Men find their way into solo series faster than any other titles” so fans who want to see any supporting cast member get a bump should be vocal about it.
Cebulski took the mic late in the panel to invite one of the Comic-Con organizers on stage to make a special presentation to Quesada. The CCO was honored with the show’s prestigious Inkpot Award for significant contributions to the artform. “I’m happy to be here after all these years, and thanks to all you guys for all the support you’ve given me,” he said.
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