Wizard World fans have been anticipating the August release of the feature film Guardians of the Galaxy for months. Marvel Comics and Wizard World, Inc. (OTCBB: WIZD) today revealed the latest edition of its 2014 series of exclusive variant covers of the best Marvel titles with the unveiling of Guardians of the Galaxy #17, drawn by Spanish native Alvaro Martinez. Just in time to celebrate the blockbuster movie, VIP attendees at Wizard World Chicago Comic Con, August 21-24 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, will receive a free copy of the limited-edition book at registration.
Martinez is scheduled to be on site at the event to sign copies (autograph fees may apply). Leading professional comic grader CGC will also be on hand to accept books for grading and Signature Series.
The exclusive version of Guardians of the Galaxy #17 will be limited to 4,000 copies and provided free at registration to all Wizard World Chicago Comic Con VIP attendees, including any celebrity VIP packages.
The cover features several Guardians characters, including Drax the Destroyer, portrayed by Dave Bautista, who will be a guest at the event on Saturday, August 23, and available to autograph copies of the comic. Castmates Karen Gillan (“Nebula”) and Michael Rooker (“Yondu”) are also scheduled to attend the show.
“I love how the Guardians of the Galaxy #17 Chicago Comic Con Exclusive came out,” said Bautista. “It’s an honor to see Drax on the cover and I look forward to signing for the fans in Chicago.”
Martinez’s work follows the first eight entries in the Wizard World variant cover series: Miracleman #1 and Miracleman #2, both drawn by Eisner Award Hall of Famer Neal Adams for Wizard World Portland Comic Con (Jan. 24-26) and New Orleans Comic Con (Feb. 7-9), respectively; Wolverine #1, illustrated by noted cover artist Greg Horn, for Wizard World Sacramento Comic Con (March 7-9); Daredevil #1 by Michael Golden for Wizard World Louisville Comic Con (March 28-30); Wolverine & The X-Men #1 by David Mack for Wizard World St. Louis Comic Con (April 4-6); Hulk #1 by Mike Grell for Wizard World Minneapolis Comic Con (May 2-4); Amazing Spider-Man #1 by John Tyler Christopher for Wizard World Atlanta Comic Con (May 30 – June 1) and Amazing Spider-Man #1.2 by J.G. Jones for Philadelphia Comic Con (June 19-22). Jorge Molina has completed a cover of 100th Anniversary X-Men Special #1 scheduled for San Antonio Comic Con (Aug. 1-3).
“Just in time for Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy comes this stunning cover from Alvaro Martinez,” says Marvel SVP Sales & Marketing David Gabriel. “We’re excited to bring this cover exclusively to attendees of the show & give them something special they can get signed by some of the stars of the upcoming film!”
Martinez has worked on numerous Marvel titles, including Cataclysm: Ultimate X-Men, Ultimate Comics X-Men and Iron Man Annual Vol. 5. The native of northern Spain (Cantabria) previously drew Harbinger #10 and Archer & Armstrong #9, gaining the attention of Marvel.
“We are pleased to welcome Alvaro Martinez to the Wizard World family and are particularly excited that his excellent Guardians cover is timed so well with the release of the film,” says John Macaluso, Wizard World CEO. “Having Drax, Dave Bautista’s character, on the cover with him attending our event is an extra special treat for VIP attendees.”
With some new faces on the team, it might be time for the Guardians to have a little team-building vacation. Or, you know, they could keep fighting alien warlords and galactic empires. Guess they’ll have to plan that team-building retreat for next month. Writer: Brian Michael Bendis; Artist: Ed McGuinness.
In addition to Bautista (WWE Superstar Batista), Gillan (“Doctor Who”) and Rooker (“The Walking Dead”), David Boreanaz (“Bones,” “Angel”), Norman Reedus (“The Walking Dead,” Boondock Saints), Matt Smith (“Doctor Who,”), Katie Cassidy (“Arrow”), William Shatner (“Star Trek,” “T.J. Hooker”), WWE® Superstar John Cena® and comics legend Stan Lee are among the celebrities scheduled to attend Wizard World Chicago Comic Con, the Midwest’s largest pop culture event. It is the 10th of 16 events in the 2014 series produced by Wizard World, Inc. and will also feature a top-drawer collection of well-known comics artists and writers and a variety of activities, exhibitors and special attractions.
For more on the 2014 Wizard Chicago Comic Con, go to http://www.wizd.me/ChicagoPR.