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ANNOUNCED!  I’ll be writing the second arc of THIEF Of THIEVES for Image Comics & Skybound Entertainment starting with issue #8 in September!

In fact, you can read the initial announcement in The Hollywood Reporter with some great quotes & info about the series.

The book is the latest smart, surprising, and utterly cool comic from Robert Kirkman (creator/writer of Walking DeadInvincible among others).  He created the world, characters, and story – and he’s co-plotting the series with a few of us rotating writers.

The current arc (available digitally or in your local comic shop) was written with Nick Spencer (creator of the hit comic Morning Glories).  I can tell you that it’s working up to a truly classic (and for me – narratively rich) finale through issues #6 & 7.  If you haven’t been reading it – you really should catch up or get the trade in September.  I also have to mention that Shawn Martinbrough is doing art for every issue of the book and absolutely delivers a cinematic cool that brings the characters and the danger to life.

I was surprised and thrilled to be asked to work on the book around the end of last year.  And one of my favorite days of my career so far was the January day spent with Kirkman and another fantastic and well-respected creator-to-be-announced-later brainstorming and fleshing out concepts and story arcs through the next three arcs of the book.  It really was like the TV writer’s room approach that Kirkman had envisioned for the series.  And it was a blast.

Both because of that brain-trust approach and the more grounded, realistic nature of Thief of Thieves – this book is going to be unlike anything I’ve written in comics.  And I am so excited for it to come out!  There’s still plenty of my instincts in the book – but I’ve been excited and inspired by both what Kirkman & Spencer have already done with the book and the concepts flying around our writer’s room.

I couldn’t be happier about getting a chance to work with Image Comics and such phenomenal collaborators.  I hope you’ll dig it, too.

HOLY $#!+ has stuff been busy and wonderful since I last posted!

The big thing to expound on (for today…) is GAMBIT! (And how you can get your hands on him…)

As announced at C2E2 – I’m writing an all new comic book series for the sexy, thieving Cajun mutant.  This book is designed to be COMPLETELY NEW-READER FRIENDLY.  We’ll be unfolding a whole new odyssey of heists, seduction, and globe-trotting high adventure for everyone who is, was, or could be interested in Gambit.

The main artist on the book is Clay Mann – who’s already won a legion of fans for his sexy and cinematic art work on X-Men: Legacy and Age of X.  He’s been doing a phenomenal job of crafting a completely engulfing world and sophisticated characters.  He’s also providing the covers for the first four issues – so you can get a sense of the world we’re building in the book:

The first TWO issues will come out in August – and if you’re interested in giving us a try – there’s THREE ways you can get the book:

  1. You can reserve your copies NOW from your local comic shop! (Find yours here.)
  2. You can get a year’s SUBSCRIPTION for home delivery (like a magazine) from Marvel.com for 25% off the cover price!
  3. Or – the comics will be available through ComiXology or Marvel Comics apps for iPad and Android devices on the same day as publication. (Stay tuned for those links when the book is released.)

I really think this book will be something that appeals to an incredibly wide audience.  Our hope is to make this book something that a lapsed comic fan – or your girlfriend who’s just dipping her toe into comics can get hooked on (and understand the plot!).

I hope you’ll give us a shot.  There’s is a LOT of sexy cool fun coming down the pipe.

And if you’re anxious to hear more particulars about what we’ve got planned – here are some of the interviews I did around the announcement:

http://www.newsarama.com/comics/c2e2-2012-marvel-next-big-thing.html  (replay “the next big thing” panel from C2E2)
http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=38181
http://www.newsarama.com/comics/c2e2-2012-gambit-asmus-mann.html
http://www.comicvine.com/news/c2e2-interview-james-asmus-deals-gambit-a-new-deck/144571/
http://marvel.com/news/story/18542/c2e2_2012_gambit
http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=38203

More of Clay Mann’s sexy Gambit. (And Rogue. Who will make a dramatic appearance in the book a little later in the year.)

The rumors and whispering in dark corners of the internet were right – GENERATION HOPE is ending in MARCH with issue #17.  {sad face emoticon}

If you’re interested to know more, I talk about it all over at ComicBookResources.

From the get-go, they asked me to write 5 issues leading up to April’s big cross-over event (Avengers vs. X-Men).  I approached the gig as a chance to wrap up the major stories of the series’ first year (while also tossing in some new elements I was interested in playing with).

This did not blindside me in the least.  We’ve talked sales numbers and the fate of the book for months, so I knew this was coming before the first issue came out in shops.  I got to tell the stories that I wanted to tell as I wanted to tell them (my editors Jordan White and Nick Lowe were AWESOME collaborators).  So I am nothing but grateful!

ANYWAY – the final two issues pack a TON of pay-off into their pages!  Not just of my issues, but for folks who have been reading the whole way through.  So I hope you’ll stay on board till the end (or grab the trade).  And page 16 of the final issue is maybe the single comic moment I’m most proud of so far. {happy face emoticon}

^ Some preview art from GENERATION HOPE #16 with pencils by Takeshi Miyazawa! It’s out mid-February with the final issue (#17) out mid-March.  And they are CRAZY-COOL comics.

THANK YOU! to all the folks who have been so kind an enthused from the moment I took over through the announcement today.  Since I’m not working in live theater anymore, it’s really nice to still hear people’s responses to this stuff and know that I’m connecting.

I’ll be back SOON with some VERY BIG non-Marvel related comics news!!!  So hang tight, cool cats. {kissy face emoticon}

Amelia Earhart: Jungle Princess cover by Mike Dimayuga

New Comic :  AMELIA EARHART: JUNGLE PRINCESS!

The famed aviatrix survived her legendary crash, only to live stranded on a remote and deadly isle! Will the local savages be friends or foes?  -  by James Asmus and Mike Dimayuga

Years after doing a(n award-winning) play by the same name with The New Colony in Chicago – I couldn’t let go of the idea!  This first tale is a stand-alone story with art by the fantastic Mike Dimayuga (Image Comics’ Colt Noble & the Megalords) and it’s available now through DoubleFeature comics!

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DoubleFeature is an awesome digital publishing outlet that delivers two different, original 8-page stories – plus bonus material – for only $0.99!  You can get the comics as a PDF you can read on any device – OR – you can download the free DoubleFeature iPad app which offers extra features like page-by-page creator commentary and the ability to strip off different layers of the art and lettering to see the work at its various stages!

When you’re done reading Amelia, you should try out the other Double Feature comics from great creators like Tim Seeley (Hack/Slash, Witchblade), Mike Norton (Green Arrow/Black Canary, Battlepug), Dennis Hopeless (Legion of Monsters, Loveless), Sean Dove (Hack/Slash, I am Legion), Gabriel Hardman (Hulk, Planet of the Apes) and tons more!  Go get ‘em!

Merry Christmas!  Happy Hanukkah (all spellings)!  Habari gani!  And Good winter to you grumpy non-celebrants out there!

I love Christmas with my family.  But the season has been even more exciting because my first issue of CAPTAIN AMERICA & BUCKY comes out THIS WEDNESDAY!  It’s a crazy modern Cap story created along with ED BRUBAKER (Eisner Award  ) and FRANCESCO FRANCAVILLA (Detective Comics, Black Panther)

PREVIEW! (note: these aren’t the FIRST 3 pages -so the comic itself has more context and storytelling…)

I loved the initial arc and the work Marc Andreyko and Chris Samnee were doing on it.   If you haven’t read it – you really should.  It’s great comics.  BUT, so you all know – our arc tells a very different story that any reader can jump right into.  I hope those who have loved the series so far will stick with us throught the serious gear-shift (in terms of era/creative team/and which “Bucky” we’re talking about).

If nothing else, I can promise you that FF’s art on our issues starts with all the passion and punch of his acclaimed work on DETECTIVE COMICS – and it seriously gets better and better with every page!  Some of the stuff he’s been sending in for parts 2 and 3 are the best work I’ve ever seen from him.  (And that is saying a lot. …Okay, here’s a sneak peek :)

ALSO!  My second issue of GENERATION HOPE (#14! with artist Ibraim Roberson & colorist Jim Charalampidis) came out last Wednesday!  And even with the holiday swooping in, a few folks had time to review it and say nice things!

Let them convince you to pick it up if you haven’t :

http://acomicbookblog.com/2011/12/generation-hope-14-review/

http://www.chicagocomicvault.com/2011/12/review-generatioin-hope-14-the-lights-ignite/

ALSO!  I did a SIGNING on last weeks release at CHALLENGERS COMICS + CONVERSATION in Chicago.  They were wonderful as always (and have a fantastic new comic art gallery that you should just go hang out in).  I left them with a few extra signed copies of my first TWO Gen Hope issues.  So if you missed the event, you can still swing by and pick ‘em up!

And finally, I deeply love this shirt from MightFine

…AND YOU SHOULD.

Enjoy your sweets and loved ones!

+james

Hey kids!  Believe it or not, multiple people have asked me if I’d drop a suggested playlist for my issues of Marvel Comics’ GENERATION HOPE  as apparently Kieron Gillen had done before me.

And it just so happens that I was (am?) a music-mix maniac for so many people in my life, that I was really tickled to do so.  That said, things have been rushed, so I hope you’ll forgive the rough and simple nature of this one.  And yes, I can’t NOT think of this as a mix tape (two sides) even though I made a digital playlist.

I hope you dig the suggestions, and I hope you’ll check out Generation Hope #14 in stores tomorrow (and PREVIEWED at the end of the post)!

GENERATION HOPE MIX TAPE, Vol. 2 #1:  LOVERS & FIGHTERS

SIDE A – Fighters

  1. “Dance Yrself Clean” – LCD Soundsystem – FYI, this is a slow starter.  Don’t bail on it early!
  2.  “Memories of the Future” – Handsome Furs
  3. “I’m In Love With Destruction” – Let’s Wrestle
  4. “Capsize” – Karen O & the Kids
  5. “We Were Sick” – The Thermals
  6. “Titus Andronicus Forever” – Titus Andronicus
  7. “We Used to Wait” – Arcade Fire

SIDE B – Lovers

  1. “Whole Wide World” – Wreckless Eric
  2. “Kiss With a Fist” – Florence + the Machine
  3. “Trust” – Generationals
  4. “Gigantic” – The Pixies
  5. “Teenagers” – Department of Eagles
  6. “You Are a Tourist” – Death Cab For Cutie

DISCLAIMERS:  I am not saying that Generation Hope #14 (OUT 12/21!! Pick it up near you!) synchs up with this by any means.   These are mix of tracks that I listen to as I write the book for purposes of mood, youth-power, or because they remind me of something intrinsic to one or more of the Gen Hope kids.   There’s also no guarantee that if you like the book, you’ll like this music or vice-versa.  But hopefully, you will!

AND MERRY X-MAS!!

Interview Round-Up #2!

(I tried to talk about different things different places, I promise.)

A quick collection of the latest interviews on GENERATION HOPE, CAPTAIN AMERICA & BUCKY, ASTONISHING X-MEN, and even some stuff about theater, comedy, and where the hell I came from!

Probably the most quickly comprehensive interview I’ve done is on Comic Vine.  And it’s on a website that runs its own comics wiki that I use RELIGIOUSLY!

A dedicated chat about ASTONISHING X-MEN #43 with Newsarama!  Hilariously, this was going to be part of a comprehensive interview, but the writer and I really got chatty – so they broke it up into a couple pieces :)  PS – Astonishing is OUT NOW!

Newsarama part 2: GENERATION HOPE!  More than any interview, this is where I talk about the thought process behind some of the scripts and choices.

Why read?  Watch and listen to a video interview!  We talk a bit more about how comedy and theater lead me into comics.

Believe it or not, I think there might still be some more stuff coming.

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Also, CBR (ComicBookResources.com) gave my Astonishing X-Men issue 4/5 stars!  You can read it all here but the real take away is – YOU SHOULD BUY A COPY!  At your local comic book store :)

<3 You.

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