In a retailer interview, Marvel's David Gabriel has reportedly indicated that the publisher will be terminating its Premiere Hardcover program as it pertains to all but the most sought-after of Marvel titles.
That is, the ones that tie directly into major franchise motion pictures, mostly controlled by Marvel Studios.
Excepting special cases like Avengers vs. X-Men and Mark Waid's award-winning Daredevil, Bleeding Cool reports that "[Marvel] will be reducing the number of Premier Hardcovers, restricting them to Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Avengers, All New X-Men, Guardians of the Galaxy, Nova, Uncanny X-Men, Uncanny Avengers, and Indestructible Hulk followed by the paperback six to eight months later as standard. Other books will get the trade paperback treatment earlier." The change appears to be effective immediately, coinciding with the launch of many of those titles form Marvel NOW!.
The move makes sense, right? These are the kinds of books--with big-budget movies based on them and characters who are household names--that sell well in the bookstore market. They're the kinds of titles that casual fans will pick up sight-unseen and retailers will order automatically, knowing that they won't end up stuck with a ton of back stock. They're characters who are recognizable, familiar and in-demand. They're...
Ever since the first concept art for Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy film emerged at Comic-Con this year, it's been suggested that Nova (who got a push from Marvel in Avengers vs. X-Men) might appear in the film alongside the team. And while this certainly isn't any smoking gun (since Nova has appeared in some digital-only material, it could be that the hardcover presentation is just a way to ease paper readers into his adventures, who knows?), lumping the character in with a handful of characters who have movies no more than two and a half years away certainly seems to suggest that his profile has been elevated somewhat. Latching that fact onto an existing rumor seems almost too convenient not to be worth thinking about.
We should also add that while Bleeding Cool is printing unofficial or unconfirmed information, there's no reason to believe that indicates they're wrong. They've got a number of retailers who push stories to them regularly and a number more who post on their message boards, so this is the kind of story where, confirmed or not, the site bats close to a thousand.