Dynamite Publishing announced two new licenses at Wizard World Chicago, for the Rebellion 2000AD properties and for The Phantom.  

The Rebellion license will include both new material based on the 2000AD properties and reprints of existing material.  The first title will be an ongoing monthly Judge Dredd comic with new material.  Alex Ross and Brian Bolland will contribute covers to the first issue, and Bolland will do covers for the “first few issues.”


“We’re going to use the same model we’ve always used,” Dynamite Publisher Nick Barrucci told us.  “We’ll put out one book for three to six months and then add other series.”


Dynamite will begin releasing monthly 144- to 200-page full color trade paperback collections of the Rebellion material three to four months after launching the first comic series.  2000AD has been been published weekly since 1977, with almost every major British comic talent working for it at some point in their careers, so there's an incredible amount of material available. 


We asked Barucci how Dynamite’s treatment of the Rebellion properties would be different from previous publishers of it in the States.  “We’re going to actually let people know that they’re coming out,” he said.  “I think that when DC put them out, they had a lot of initiatives going on.  They had CMX, Humanoids, and the Rebellion line all coming out at once.  They weren’t able to give it any kind of attention.  We’re going to make sure that we give the Rebellion line a clear field and a fighting chance.”  


Rebellion Developments is a videogame producer which acquired the 2000 AD properties in 2000 and has produced two videogames based on them since.  Judge Dredd was the subject of a 1995 movie starring Sylvester Stallone.


Dynamite also announced the acquisition of rights to produce an ongoing comic series based on Lee Falk’s The Phantom, beginning in January 2009.  Covers will be done by Alex Ross; other details are to be determined.  There is an over-all plan, however.  “We’re talking to a few writers, so we’ll have to see if our vision matches up with the writer’s vision, but the idea is to get him in and out of the jungle in the first six issues,” Barrucci revealed.  


A Moonstone Books representative at the company's booth at the show said they were unaware of any change in the company's current Phantom publishing proram, which has included an ongoing comic series, trade paperback collections of the Sunday newspaper strips, and a prose anthology. 


The Phantom was created by Lee Falk as a daily newspaper strip in 1936, and is still being published in that format today.  The character has also been the subject of comics, movie serials, a 1996 live action feature starring Billy Zane, animated series, and videogames.  A new film is currently in development.