"Career Moves" (8 pages)

Interview from Wizard Magazine (July 1994)
interview by Patrick Daniel O'Neill
transcribed by vu

Career Moves
interview by Patrick Daniel O'Neill

Creator George Pérez reminisces about his 20-year career, the Justice League/Avengers crossover follies, and his upcoming work on Malibu's Ultraforce.

BRONX-BORN GEORGE PEREZ is a self-taught artist who after two decades in the business finds himself among those rare few who are acknowledged favorites - not just of longtime comic readers who have followed his work for years - but also of relative newcomers. Now 40 years old, he first came to the attention of fans at age 20 with a run on Marvel's Avengers. His reputation grew when he co-created The New Teen Titans for DC Comics. He has since garnered accolades for Crisis on Infinite Earths, Wonder Woman, Infinity Gauntlet, and Sachs and Violens. Pérez is currently gearing up for Malibu's new team book, Ultraforce.

WIZARD: You've just finished up Sachs and Violens the Epic mini-series written by Peter David. Did you have any qualms about doing a story like that, with adult contents?
PEREZ: Heavens, no! it's all I can do not to get more fetishes in.

On the first issue, I was a little more constrained because I was concerned about doing a book like that. How much of it would come off as prurient, as opposed to a good story with some kinky elements? With all the respect I have for Peter's writing, would the story be strong enough for readers to see through the initial sleaziness of content?

As it turned out, my fears were unfounded. Then I noticed Peter putting in more stuff, and he noticed me putting in stuff with bondage and leather, and he realized we had hit the right note of perversion.

You had hit the line you couldn't cross?
Right. But first and foremost, it works because we were both trying to tell a story. It's a real challenge to do an urban crime story, when you can't be fanciful and make stuff up. I always wanted to do "good girl art" - I'm as kinky as the next guy, dpending on who the next guy is - and I started letting go more.

Part of the reason the first issue isn't as explicit as the later ones is I wanted to give reader something to look forward to. If J.J. Sachs was shown totally nude from the beginning, we would have thrown all our cards on the table and have had no game left.

Were the scheduling problems on Sachs and Violens just another case of overwork on your part?
Yeah - whenever things are delayed, it's overworked and often some economics as well.

You know, I have gotten to the point that I can say, "no". I've actually turned down a lot of work lately.

So you did two Break-Thru bookends last year for Malibu as an economic tide-over, and now you're doing Ultraforce?
Yeah which is basically Malibu's version of the Avengers and Justice League, teaming up their existing characters with new ones. It's also the first book since Wonder Woman that I actively campaigned for.

I heard about Ultraforce from [Malibu Editor] Hank Kanalz, who was called about my doing three fill-in issue of Prime, and he asked me to design the new characters. Ultraforce #0 will appear as a two-part addition to two issue of Wizard, meaning that probably more people will see it than any other Malibu comic up until now.

I said if I was going to design the characters, I'd like to draw the book as well. I don't feel comfortable designing characters for other people to draw. They sent me Gerry Jones's script, and after talking with all the business type, I agreed to do #0 and at least six issues more. I haven't done a legitimate group book since New Titans, and I was really jazzed about starting something from the ground floor again.

Are you also doing something for Bravura at Malibu?
I hope to be. The negotiations are underway. It's called Gladiator [ which turned into Crimson Plague ]. It's still in the legal morass. In fact, Jim Lee at Image says they would like to be involved in the negotiation and could maybe offer a better deal. [Image is] another player I hadn't reckoned on.

[But] I really, really enjoy working with Malibu. Financial considerations aside - lord knows I've made a lot of money working for DC and Marvel - Malibu has a genuine respect for the creative personnel. Even on a work-for-hire basis, they've gone out of their way to help me. I had a slight medical emergency at one point and they were there to help.

They acknowledge talent as the bastion of the industry; they're not going to have any books unless they have talent working on them. They treat the new people with the same professional respect as the established pros.

We met when you were still in high school. I guess the stuff Jim Glenn and I published in our Factor Unknown fanzine in 1971 when you were 17 was your first work to see print. How did you make the break into the professional ranks?
Incredible luck. I was making the rounds [at] the conventions, as so many aspiring artists do, right out of high school. I had also begun making the circuit of the publishers - DC, Marvel, Continuity. [The conventions were] where I got my first taste of criticism - which left me shell-shocked and nearly caused me to quit. In hindsight, I realized the criticism were harsh only because I wasn't used to [them].

I got in with [Factor Unknown] , but meanwhile Sal Quartuccio [now head of Sal Q Productions] had shown my stuff to [artist] Rich Buckler. Rich need an assistant and called me up with an offer. I was working as a bank teller at the time.

My first published pro work was on Rich's first issue of Deathlok, Astonishing Tales #25. He gave me a two-page cartoon sequence at the end showing how he and Doug Moench came up with Deathlok from discarded ideas in a trash pail. My art being what it was at the time, I penciled everything except the Deathlok figure.

By being Rich's assistant, people at Marvel got to know me. And people like [editor] Jim Salicrup and [writers] David Kraft and Bill Mantlo saw my work, liked it, and got me my first work under my own name. George Tuska needed a break on the Man-Wolf feature in Creatures on the Loose and Dave Kraft liked working with me, so he asked me to stay. Around the same time, I was given a fill-in on the Sons of the Tiger feature in Deadly Hans of Kung Fu #6, but Bill Mantlo asked for me to stay on as well.

Thanks to them, I was given regular work fairly quickly. That was around 1974, only two years out of high school. Within six months after that, Rich Buckler fell behind. Since I was Rich's assistant, they asked me to pencil what was supposed to be a Fantastic Four annual and turn into two issues of the regular book [#164-#165].

What did you do as Buckler's assistant?
Basically, I helped him with layout. Or I'd go through his swipe file - batches of comics - looking for suitable swipes for the story he was doing. Since at the time he was doing Thor and Fantastic Four, that meant lots of Jack Kirby books.

I disliked that intensely, but it was my job. [Laughs] He had other assistants, but since I was the new guy on the block, I was given the grunt work. I didn't like doing it that way. I didn't want to be a Kirby clone. I was influenced by Jack, but I didn't want to copy him.

I learned a few tricks of the trade in storytelling from looking at those pages. I learned a lot about why Jack did things in a certain way. It was an education, but I was young, I was impetuous, I was impatient. I wanted to draw, and somehow working in a pseudo-Kirby style wasn't my idea of what I wanted to do.

We actually parted ways before I got my first assignment at Marvel, but Rich was the one who passed on the call from Jim Salicrup to me.

I guess the place you first got to be fan-favorite was on Avengers. How did you wind up with that assignment - at the time, a fairly prestigious job to hand to a newcomer?
It was a prestigious book, but because of the financial structure of payments at the time, with no royalties, it wasn't a book a lot of artists wanted to do. It was a hard book to do because of the number of characters involved. When you're earning the same amount of money drawing a Captain America story as you are drawing Captain America and a half-dozen other characters, a lot of artists will opt for handling Captain America alone. So Avengers wasn't really a book a lot of people wanted, prestigious as it might have been.

But I always loved The Avengers; I loved team books. When I was coming into the business, my dream was always to do Justice League of America or Legion of Super-Heroes 0 and ironically, I've still never done the Legion [and probably never will]. At this point, the Legion book is so different from the Legion I had read [as a kid].

Avengers was a book I wanted to draw, but few others did... despite my deficiencies as an artist at the time, they were pleased to get someone who could bring an enthusiasm that was lacking at the time. It was a tough act to follow after a glory period with John Buscema and Neal Adams. They needed somebody who could go in there and really, really enjoy it. And I did.

You penciled about 30 issues of Avengers and you did other Marvel books. Why did you leave Marvel?
Originally, it wasn't an intention of leaving Marvel as opposed to branching out. I know other people were having trouble with Marvel at the time, and [writer] Marv Wolfman had approached me about doing a new Teen Titans book at DC. With DC's track record at the time, I thought I was probably committing myself to only six issue. I agreed to do the New Teen Titans only if I got a crack at least one issue of Justice League of America, which was the book I really wanted to do. It seemed like a natural progress from the Avengers.

A few weeks later, I got a phone call from Dick Dillin [the artist who had drawn more than 100 issues of JLA] died, and I ended up getting to draw Justice League of America became a passing acquaintance and Titans was a big blockbuster.

So for a time, I was doing Avengers, Titans and Justice League. And I decided to drop Avengers because it was the one that I'd been doing the longest and the others were just too new to drop.

So my departure from Marvel was amicable at the time. It didn't became rancorous until the problems with the Justice League/Avengers crossover....

Let's get back to that in a moment. I want to go through your early days on the Titans. When Marv called you and said he wanted to do a new version of the Teen Titans, how much had he already formalized then?
The characters were pretty much already conceived and blueprinted, to a limited degree, by Marv and Len Wein, both of whom were big Titans fan in their youth. This is a big break for them.

They already knew what kind of characters they wanted: a cosmic character, a cyborg and someone a little more magical. They gave me the names and where they wanted to go with it, such as Raven's soulself, which I visualized as [the Larry Trainor version] of Negative Man [from the old] Doom Patrol. I went home and designed each character once, came in with the designs and they liked them all. I removed the belt from Raven's outfit, and Joe Orlando came in and saw Starfire and said, "Make her hair longer", created one of her strongest visual trademarks.

My early designs didn't have the identifiable facial features later developed; that didn't come until I started casting them in my mind and using real people as my influeances, mostly friends of mine. Raven changed so drastically that we did a story in Titans showing that the facial changes were a manifestation of her powers.

When did you and Marv realised that the Titans was becoming the closest thing DC had to the sales success of Marvel's X-Men?
I think it was when the letters started coming in. since there were no royalties back then, we had no benchmark to judge the sale figures. But we noticed the reaction we were getting. I think #8 was the point we felt the book was becoming special, because we were experimenting with the personalities of the characters over the action. The reaction to that issue was so good: people were talking about the book, we started to see how many books were signing at conventions, the press began to comment on Titans and tell us we [produced] a hot book... and then the company told us how sales on each issue were climbing.

Titan's success gave DC something it had been lacking until then: a sense of legitimacy in the market, which it hadn't had in years. Titans became the sole DC book in the direct market top 10 lists. It was very gratifying, especially since it could be traced to the creators - people were picking it up because of Marv, me, and Len. It helped show that creators do make a difference on a book.

Did you have a favorite among the Titans?
My favorite to draw was Starfire, because she made for young male artist to enjoy. The one character I enjoyed developing was Cyborg: he was an innercity youth, as I was. It allowed me a little more input to his character than I had with the others. Neither Marv nor I is cosmic, so Starfire was pretty much anyon'es call; on Raven, I deferred Marv, because he had done Tomb of Dracula and understood that mystic stuff; but Cyborg was from a situation that was alien to Marv on a first-hand basis. He had taught high school in Brooklyn, but that's not the same as growing up in the ghetto. There's also something about Cyborg being big but tender; I've always had a real liking for that type of character.

Eventually, Marv became editor...
Actually, Marv and I together. Marv refused to be my boss, so he graciously made me co-editor.

Because of the way we worked - particularly after royalties started and before this became standard policy in the field - Marv deferred half his plotting rate and plotting royalty to me. Marv was the first to acknowledge the artist's contribution to the plotting. In a business, especially in the last couple of years, where the writer and artist seem to be at war with each other, this is an example of what it can be like if two people have enough respect for each other to acknowledge that both are important.

Your run on JLA was much like your run on Avengers - you were in there for 10 issues or so, then gone. Was it deadlines again ?
By that time, I was beginning to slow down. As I was starting to make a conscious effort to become a better artist, I realized that that in itself takes time. I started to slow down and get more anatomy books and architecture books.

Titans had become more my and Marv's baby, and I started to put more of my effort there and JLA started to suffer. Suddenly my interest on JLA lagged. Titans was much more personal to me, and DC was asking for more Titans tie-ins, mini-series, and such. It became impossible to handle anything in addition to Titans. I dropped JLA knowning my career had changed to the point where I was no longer interested in doing the books I had once built all my goals on; now I was drawing books that I would never have thought about in the past. I didn't grow up thinking I'd draw the Teen Titans.

Let's get back to the Justice League/Avengers crossover. I gather the problem that Marvel - and specifically Jim Shooter, in your mind, was less than forthcoming in anything the plot and things like that.
That would be simplifying it to Jim's detriment.

The first fault was specifically Len Wein's - not a slam at Len, by the way. Len approved my starting to pencil the plot that Gerry Conway had provided. I realized there were lots of holes in it and asked if I could fill them up as I went along. Basically, they put their faith in me, since I knew both groups of characters.

It wasn't until I'd finished more than 20 pages that I received a call and discovered that Len had given me the go-ahead before the plot had even been sent to Jim Shooter for approval. And the flaws, I found in it were the same ones Jim found, pretty much. I was fixing it as I went along, and Jim having worked with me on Avengers, should have known I would do that.

But Jim, from what I can tell, thought DC had treated him badly on his last stint with the company, and this was a slight he was not going to take, that a major project was being done without his official okey-dokey. To me, it seemed, this was not going to be revenge. It would be a payback for a lot of years - my work was being held hostage.

At first, I was angry with Len for having me start [working] with a plot that was not approved; then I got angry with Jim... everything he was complaining about - in my mind - could easily be taken care of; in fact I was already taking care of it. He started to get picayune about things - why his character shouldn't be here - as opposed to the idea that this was a fan's dream. It was a contrivance in and of itself. [I said] "we can get around all this. Let's produce this because it's a book everyone's been waiting for."

Unfortunately, it became a gianatic pissing contest... at one point, they asked for Roy Thomas to redo the plot, utilizing as many of the pages I had drawn as possible. But by that point, the damage was done. It got to the point where I refused to do the fourth cover for the Black Widow story in Marvel Fanfare #13. I told the editor, Al Milgrom, "I'm broken. I can't do any more work for Marvel Comics as long as Jim Shooter is editor-in-chief."

That's when I signed the exclusive contract with DC, to ensure this wouldn't become an empty threat. I'd made myself legally unable to go to Marvel, even if I changed my mind. It might have cost me money - but I was angry.

One thing I should point out: Jim Shooter and I have long [since] buried the hatchet. I've told him I would gladly do a cover for Defiant if he needs one. I don't want people to infer that I am still carrying a grudge.

What caused you to leave Titans?
I left, finally because I was a victim of the book's success. In order to handle the work - which by then was only layouts, not finished pencils - I was, in my mind, hacking stuff out. And sales were still going through the roof. I realized I could do less than my best work and the book would still sell. That's good financially, but it didn't give me any gratification as an artist when people could only judge me by what I considered mediocre work.

I can't just take the money and run. My wife often criticizes me: "what's the matter, George? Are you afraid of success ?"

The next thing I did was Crisis on Infinite Earths, again with Marv.

Before 1985, different DC heroes lived on different Earths. With a "maxi-series" like Crisis, intended to merge the different Earths into one and essentially start the DC Universe anew, there had to be an awful lot of intraoffice politics involved as you were working on it.
Oh, yeah. Considering it was intended to be a cleaning out of dead weight and an attempt to reorganize the DC Universe, and since it was the first intracompany crossover, it was bound to stomp on a few toes.

There were meetings held, before the first issue was begun, with other writers and editors. DC had a policy at the time of being creator-friendly and creator-receptive; there were a lot of artist/editors and people who were given the respect of having their opinions heard when it came to their characters. Here we were coming in with a series - that DC itself had wanted! - to clean house and basically tell some people working on long-established stories that their stories would be moot or have to be adjusted to fit Crisis. To some extent in the office, there were people who simply saw this as DC jumping on Marvel's Secret Wars bandwagon. They had very little confidence in it.

At what point while doing Crisis did you realize that DC was going to wipe out the existing Wonder Woman and that you wanted to redesign her ?
I'd been wanting to do a Wonder Woman mini-series since I did New Teen Titans #11 where [the Titans] went to Paradise Island. I had an idea for a "trial of the gods"-type of story. But I was so busy, I never got around to it.

You know, we were supposed to kill Superman at the end of Crisis, too.

Oh, really?
But DC backpedaled at the last moment, because they had no replacement. John Byrne [who later revamped Superman] wasn't part of the equation yet. They had no plans for Wonder Woman, either, but they didn't care; she simply wasn't as important on a corporate level.

After John Byrne's work on Superman and Frank Miller's on Batman, DC realized now they had to bring back Wonder Woman. I thought this could be interesting. Janice Race was slated to be the new editor, they had an artist they weren't happy with, and they weren't happy with the plot, even after three or four rewrites. It seemed as though Wonder Woman would again be the girl left out of the boys' club - a victim of indifference.

I went to Janice and said that if she gave me time to do some research, I would take a crack at drawing the book. I wanted a hand in the plotting, too. They gave me 10 months to work on it [and let me use] as much as I could of Greg Potter's original plot, which had things in it a lot of people disliked, particularly the women in the company.

The women on staff viewed Greg's original concepts as one in which Wonder Woman was either a victim of or an enemy to men, and they thought it was sending out a misogynist message. Many of them didn't like the idea that every Amazon was reincarnated from a murdered woman and carried the memories of that murder with them.

Greg downplayed the mythological elements more than I did; he had Wonder Woman already in Man's World by the end of Wonder Woman #1, but I [pushed it back] to #3. my goal was to use the mythological elements to make her more than just a female Superman and give her a much more humanist, if not feminist, slant.

In that time, Janice left and I got Karen Berger as editor... giving me exactly what I wanted - a woman editor and a good editor.

You didn't write Wonder Woman from the beginning...
And that was because of Karen. Karen didn't grow up a superhero fan, so a lot of this stuff she has learned as she went along. But she has always appreciated the written word. She doesn't think it's something that is part of everyone's DNA makeup - some people are writers and some people are not.

She knew I had co-plotted Titans and that I was making suggestions to Len Wein on the dialogue of Wonder Woman. She knew I had certain ideas about writing. Finally, with #17, Len left the book and I started to write it. It was a turning point for Wonder Woman as a character, so it seemed like a good time to make the change.

I wrote the first 10 pages twice, because Karen felt there were major flaws: a tendency to be wordy, a tendency for me as a writer to be fighting myself as an artist. I appreciated the fact that she wasn't intimidated by my favourite reputation: "you are the person doing Wonder Woman and the book is the most important thing," she said. And I became a better writer because of Karen Berger.

And somewhere in there, you resolved things and went back to doing some work for Marvel. I remember saying you in 91 that I thought you were crazy to try and do two mini-series - Marvel's Infinity Gauntlet and DC's War of the Gods - in the same summer.
It was a stupid thing to do, I confess.

So all the problems with those two series - replacement artist, fouled-up scheduling, and the lot - happened because you made a bad decision?
Oh, yeah. I didn't realize that I'm not as young as I was, and no matter how much I compromised on the artwork - War of the Gods was supposed to be just layouts on my side - I can't seem to work that way. I always end up wanting to do more and more, and if I feel dissatisfied, I end up slowing down.

War of the Gods was supposed to be, in my mind, a celebration of Wonder Woman's 50th anniversary. That was the first thing DC wanted to discard. It was a time when DC had paid me advance money for the book, and I need the money. I wanted to [cancel the mini-series] desperately, but I couldn't. No body else wanted the book. And to top it all off, Karen Berger went into labor.

The editor was now an inexperienced person... I did the plot for War of the Gods a year before the first issue came out, and up until the first issue came out, I was getting calls from writers [of crossover books] who had never even heard about it. It was a cursed book.

So you dropped Infinity Gauntlet because you were contractually bound to do War of the Gods?
In the case of Marvel's Infinity Gauntlet, Craig Anderson acted professionally. He was right I was falling behind and he intended to replace me for just the last half of #4.

This is going to sound really bitchy, but I'll have live with that. I was becoming, by that point, disenchanted with Infinity Gauntlet... I thought the story was worth maybe two issues. It was so padded out - how many times will these people fight Thanos, be defeated, [and be brought] back ?

So that first fill-in - after making me angry because my pride was hurt - gave me the initiative to say I didn't feel like finishing. I thought Ron Lim should have drawn it from the beginning.

I thought this was to be the final chapter of the Thanos saga. When I heard about Infinity War and Infinity Crusade, I was just as glad to be out of it, because I would have felt pretty betrayed. How man times can you go back to this well ?

To end this up with a look to the future, quickly tell me about upcoming Giant-Man mini-series you're writing.
I got a call from [Marvel] on behalf of Ralph Macchio. Having brought back Hank Pym as Giant-Man, Marvel wanted to do something to get the character noticed again. They wanted to show that "being a giant can be cool". The hard part was finding a hook - in a world full of Hulks and mutants, what makes Giant-Man special? He's never been more than a second-stringer.

I'm doing it as a tribute to the old 1950s "giant creature" films. Since he used to be Ant-Man, the idea of giant ants seemed perfect. The first issue opens with a shot of him riding a flying ant... and only until you turn the page do you realize that he's not ant-sized, the ants are giant-sized! They're chasing a woman who is running from other giant ants[like in the film] Them.

other movies I'll be paying tribute to are Tarantula, The Amazing Colossal Man, Attack of the 50-Foot Woman- guess what happens to Jon Van Dyne [aka Wasp]?

Basically, what I'm doing is a 1950s Marvel monster comic!

After so many years of doing work for hire, and with your creator-owned Gladiator on the board, are you leaning more towards the characters you grew up with or newer, creator-owned projects?
While certain characters - the Justice League, Superman, things like that - will always be attractive, I'm not looking to do any long-term work-for-hire projects. I'm doing Ultraforce with a six-issue commitment, but I'd rather concentrate on my own stuff and occasional special projects on a work-for-hire basis.

Can you ever see yourself working outside of comics?
No way - it's my career, my way of making a living.


A lot of mystery surrounds the unpublished 1983 DC/Marvel Justice League of America/Avengers crossover. After artist George Pérez addressed the controversy in his interview with Patrick Daniel O'Neill, Wizard contacted Jim Shooter and Dick Giordano to see if Marvel's then editor-in-chief and DC's then vice president and executive editor, respectively, could set the record straight.

Shooter's response to Pérez's comments:

"George is very misinformed.

"The plot for the JLA/Avengers had indeed been submitted to me before George started drawing it. It was weak, full of holes and replete with continuaity glitches. I rejected it in writing. Dick Giordano subsequently telephoned me to ask if I would mind it if he told Gerry Conway that DC had rejected the plot instead of me, for some strange reason of internal politics which I never did understand. I said I didn't care what DC did internally as long as I got a revised plot.

"A month or two later, I heard a rumor that George Pérez had drawn 21 pages of the rejected plot ! I couldn't get Dick on the phone, so I sent him a telegram telling him to stop work immediately.

"Dick sent me copies of the pages. To George's credit, he had indeed fixed many, but not all, of the problems. I judged that most of the pages were not only usable but excellent and that the unusable pages could be fixed with minor corrections. I asked that the corrections be done and a revised plot be submitted before work progressed.

"I'm not sure what went on at DC, but at one point Dick took me to lunch and asked that they be allowed to finish the book as originally plotted. Again, he cited DC's internal plotical strife. His position was basically this: who cares if it's wrong or bad, it'll sell like crazy anyway. He confirmed those sentiments later in a letter to me. Well, I cared if it was wrong or bad, and I insisted on corrections and a revised plot.

"The first time I knew that George was angry at me when I read an interview in a fan magazine in which he unjustly condemned me. Why he didn't simply call me and ask me what was going on amazes me to this day. George shouldn't make presumptions about my motives.

"I had no vendetta against DC. I was in fact the one who reinstated the crossovers, along with Jenette Kahn. Why would I sabotage them?

"The president and business affairs brass of Marvel backed my position to the point that they were willing to let the project die, taking perhaps several hundred thousands dollars off of our bottom line. They would not have allowed such an event to occur over some personal vendetta of mine, I assure you."

Giordano declined to comment on the matter, instead referring inquirers to an edition of his "Meanwhile..." column. The column ran in DC issues cover date January 1985. DC comics says that the column accurately reflects DC's feelings at that time.

In the column, Giordano admitted that he (not Len Wein, as Pérez believes) was at fault for allowing Pérez to begin penciling the crossover without getting written approval of the plot from Shooter, as Shooter had requested. "I thought this request to be logical but largely a formality," Giordano wrote.

In a letter to Shooter that he reprinted in the "Meanwhile..." column, Giordano conceded that the original script had been somewhat problematic. "Yes, there still remain some questions left unanswered in the plot, but no more or less than are left unanswered in most plots. More often than not, these questions are resolved while the work is in progress, and I'm sure that you'll agree the levels of skill possessed by George Pérez, [writer] Roy Thomas, Len Wein, and myself are sufficient to resolve those plot 'holes' to everyone's satisfaction." In the column, Giordano added, "With one page and a few panels redrawn and a few copy changes, the motivations for the characters' behavior were right..." He came to believe that Shooter was stalling plot approval.

Giordano's conclusion ? "In my view, the JLA/Avengers book will not be published, because somebody, or several somebodies, at Marvel simply doesn't want it to be published," presumably a reference to Marvel's editorial team. He then apologized to the fans for not being able to print the crossover.

will the unfinished crossover someday be published? Although both publishers now have different editorial teams, it seems unlikely. Neal Pozner, DC's group editor of creative services, says that although he as a reader would like to see it published, DC doesn't feel that the time is right for it. A high-level Marvel source says that while the company always entertains new ideas and concepts, this particular project's status - it was officially canceled over 10 years ago - has not changed.