On May 25, 1977, American cinema and pop-culture were changed forever with the release of Star Wars, a sci-fi epic written and directed by George Lucas. The movie was a runaway success, with people of all ages lined up outside their local movie theaters to see what the buzz was all about. A month prior to the films release, Marvel Comics released the first issue of their Star Wars comic, written and edited by legendary writer Roy Thomas and drawn by the prolific Howard Chaykin. The series was a smash hit. It ran for nine years and reached 114 issues. The first six issues were an adaptation of A New Hope, issues 39 through 44 adapted The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi saw publication as its own mini-series.
The Star Wars comics saw a plethora of top talent in comics, including industry giants like Carmine Infantino and Archie Goodwin. Having spent three years on the book, Goodwin was once quoted as saying, “The Star Wars universe is a great place to visit… even if I don’t live there anymore.” Fans got to go deeper into characters from the films like Boba Fett, Dengar, and Lando Calrissian. At the same time, they were constantly being introduced to new characters, including longtime fan favorite Lumiya. With the amount of talent and room to explore, Marvel’s Star Wars was never at a loss for stories.
With the release of IDW Publishing’s Star Wars Artist’s Edition and the impending release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens just around the corner, the San Diego Comic Art Gallery is proud to showcase the art of Howard Chaykin and Marvel’s Star Wars. May the force be with you!