2017 marks a special time for Star Wars: it's the fortieth anniversary of the franchise. Yes, Star Wars turns 40, celebrating the release of the first film, now known as Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope, and Marvel Comics, which publishes the official canon Star Wars serials, will be celebrating the anniversary (naturally), they announced via StarWars.com today.
The publisher will highlight the anniversary all year long with special variant covers. They carry the Star Wars 40th Anniversary logo designed by Lucasfilm and first revealed at Star Wars Celebration Europe last July, plus vector images of the Death Star, X-wings, TIE fighters, and the Millennium Falcon framing the art. Each of the 48 anniversary variant covers will be numbered: 1/48, 2/48, etc., and will bring in the top artists in comics.
The first announced variants include: Doctor Aphra #3 variant by Juan Gimenez, Poe Dameron #10 variant by Stuart Immonen, Star Wars #27 variant by Ryan Stegman & Jordan Boyd, plus art by Michael Walsh, Mike Mayhew, Michael Laming, David Lopez, and Kevin Wada that hasn't yet been attached to specific comics. The variant additions also highlight the cover artist along the border, a nice touch for the creatives.
The Star Wars 40th Anniversary Variant Covers start shipping in January 2017, which also marks the two year anniversary of Marvel publishing Star Wars canon comics.
Marvel Comics currently publishes three ongoing Star Wars comic book series: Doctor Aphra, Poe Dameron, and Star Wars. A Darth Maul mini-series launches in February 2017. See the full revealed covers so far in the gallery below.
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