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Sunday, February 26, 2006


NEW YORK -- John Romita Jr. has extended his exclusive contract with Marvel Comics and will team with Neil Gaiman on the upcoming The Eternals, it was announced Saturday at Marvel's Cup O' Joe panel at New York Comic-Con.

"When it comes to drawing a comic book, there's nobody in the business better than Johnny," Marvel editor-in-chief Joe Quesada said.

Romita called The Eternals "a plum assignment."

"To do something Jack Kirby once did is something special," he said. "So, I have to refer to Jack Kirby in the back of my mind, which is a pleasure."

Quesada said The Eternals have "never quite clicked" within the Marvel Universe. The series will reveal who they really are and where they're from, and set up a platform for future tales.

In other highlights from the panel:

* Quesada said Jae Lee continues to work on Stephen King's Dark Tower, with a 2007 launch intended.

* Marvel has struck a deal with Top Cow Productions to use Top Cow's talent and resources. Tyler Kirkham will be doing the art for Amazing Spider-Man #530, and Quesada said Marc Silvestri is working on a "huge" project.

"Marc is one of the great draftsmen of the last decade," Quesada said.

* For Civil War, there will be Daily Bugle special, similar to to The Pulse special for House of M.

* Quesada said there will be a "big crossover" in the Ultimate Universe.

* There has been talk of a possible ongoing The Sentry series.

* Quesada said he's waiting for a pitch from Ron Zimmerman for Rawhide Kid: The Fabuously Magnificent. "If it's as funny as the title, I'm on board," he said.

* The late Seth Fisher's recent Fantastic Four/Iron Man mini-series will be collected into a trade paperback in June.

* Quesada said the Punisher will be showing up in Marvel Universe titles.

* C.B. Cebulski is writing an upcoming Dakota North mini-series.

* Quesada said that Marcos Martin's art for the upcoming Doctor Strange series written by Brian K. Vaughan will be "Ditko-esque."

* Quesada said there are plans for Inhumans.

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