The Hitman video game franchise goes back to 2000 and with two different film adaptions, so the odds are at least even that you’ve heard of it.  If not, it’s a game about Agent 47 (or just “47”), an elite hitman who’s been cloned from the enhanced DNA of five master criminals.

The comic will be Christopher (Hellraiser, Injustice: Ground Zero, Green Lantern/Space Ghost) Sebela and drawn by Jonathan (Bionic ManBattlestar Galactica) Lau.  And it will be an origin story of sorts for Agent 47 and his handler, Diana Burnwood.

47 and his handler, Diana Burnwood, are a team responsible for some of the most ruthless, efficient and untraceable assassinations across the globe. But before they were operatives of the shadowy International Contracts Association, 47 and Burnwood were on their own separate paths in life – streets lined with blood, bullets and revenge. As 14-year-old Diana begins a mission to track down the people who killed her parents, 47 is struggling to free himself and his friend, 6, from the mysterious Institute which has bred them as killers since they were kids. With a story that stretches from the heartland of America to the Berlin Wall, Lone Wolves will trace the birth of the legendary Hitman and the secret past of the woman behind him who pulls the string and knows just how hard taking a life truly is.

Agent 47: Birth of the Hitman is scheduled to hit shelves in October.

Official PR follows, and then some covers:

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Dynamite Entertainment is thrilled to announce that writer Christopher Sebela (Hellraiser,Injustice: Ground Zero, Green Lantern/Space Ghost), and artist Jonathan Lau (Bionic ManBattlestar Galactica) are set to team up to bring the world of the popular video game franchise Hitman to the pages of comics, thanks to a new partnership with transmedia outfit Gunpowder Studios, in conjunction with video game developer IO Interactive. Dynamite’s new series, entitled in Agent 47: Birth of the Hitman is set to launch October 11, 2017, and will delve into the origin of one of gaming’s most infamous characters, Agent 47!

47 and his handler, Diana Burnwood, are a team responsible for some of the most ruthless, efficient and untraceable assassinations across the globe. But before they were operatives of the shadowy International Contracts Association, 47 and Burnwood were on their own separate paths in life – streets lined with blood, bullets and revenge. As 14-year-old Diana begins a mission to track down the people who killed her parents, 47 is struggling to free himself and his friend, 6, from the mysterious Institute which has bred them as killers since they were kids. With a story that stretches from the heartland of America to the Berlin Wall, Lone Wolves will trace the birth of the legendary Hitman and the secret past of the woman behind him who pulls the string and knows just how hard taking a life truly is.

Writer Chris Sebela said, “I’ve always loved murder stories, so when Dynamite asked if I had any ideas about a Hitman book, all my gears started to race right off their spindles. Of course, I did. But as much as I love the assassination playground setup of the games, what lured me in was figuring out how someone becomes an apex predator and how, with each new acquired skill, something more vital gets lost or sacrificed along the way. Not just for Agent 47, but also with his handler – the woman who chooses their jobs and points him at a target. Every job and life 47 takes can potentially swing the tides of history on a whim, and seeing how it all intertwines through a history we thought we knew was the final magical element that I needed to get to work and I’m really excited to get it out there.”

Christopher Sebela is a two-time Eisner-Award nominated writer forever hard at work in Portland, Oregon. He’s the co-creator of HeartthrobHigh CrimesWe(l)come BackDead Letters and Short Order Crooks as well as having written things like Kiss/VampirellaDetective ComicsEscape from New YorkCaptain MarvelInjustice: Ground Zero and Demonic. He is a fan of dogs, coffee, horror movies and writing about himself in the third person.

Artist Jonathan Lau said, “I played the games and watched the movies so I was a fan from the get go, so choosing Hitman was a pretty obvious choice for me from among the many other properties from DE. I was protective at the outset in the sense that I love the character so much I wouldn’t want other artists who are unfamiliar with Agent 47 to handle him. His persona of being robotic, very calculating, apathetic, emotionless, and always wearing a dead-pan face, has engrossed me ever since. In one sense he’s easy to draw, but on the other hand, the environment is the most tedious and time-consuming part to work on, as it feels alive and ever-changing.  As a fan, I’m enjoying creating this world from a fan’s point of view. If I get thrilled at every turn of the page, and if that suspense holds for fans, then I know I’ve accurately depicted the world of Hitman as it truly deserves to be.”

Jonathan Lau has been an exclusive artist with Dynamite since the inception of his career. Beginning with Battlestar Galactica, Lau then joined the creative teams on The Green Hornet, and Bionic Man based on undeveloped screenplays from director Kevin Smith. Lau also contributed to a number of mini-series including Peter Canon ThunderboltMiss FurySolar Man of the Atom and Pathfinder, as well doing alternate covers for many of Dynamite’s titles. His artist strength lies in his pulse-pounding action scenes, and states his biggest influences come from Manhwa or Kung Fu comics.

Dynamite Editor Anthony Marques said, “I am incredibly excited to be working with Chris and Jonathan on this. The creative team for Agent 47: Birth of the Hitman couldn’t be more well suited for this title and is sure to deliver all of the action and thrills of the Hitman universe that fans have come to know and love from the games. The story will shed a light on the mysterious Agent 47 and bring readers into his world in a completely new and exciting way.”

Rune Bendixen from Gunpowder Studios, a transmedia outfit, said that “the world of Hitman is immense and rich. We had to give the millions of fans a chance to learn more about this character.”

“We will be exploring 47’s legendary past, but rest assured that it is also one full of surprises,” said fellow transmedia producer Jean Pierre Magro.

“IO Interactive is truly excited about this collaboration. The ‘world of assassination’ is a vast, sprawling place and there are many important events and unique exciting story lines, which are perfect for the comic book format. Agent 47 will be directly connected to the overarching story in the ongoing Hitman game and the comic book is instrumental in our continued goal to expand and reimagine the Hitman universe, ” said Michael Vogt, Lead writer on Hitman.

“It’s been an honor to work with everyone involved in this project,” said Nick Barrucchi, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite. “IO Interactive has long been a leader in cutting-edge game development, which is a perfect match for the cutting-edge style that Chris Sebela and Jonathan Lau bring to all of their work. We’re excited to bring one of the most popular game franchises in history to the pages of comics, and to provide fans of the game with an entirely new experience set within the world they’ve come to know and love!”

Hitman, developed by Danish company IO Interactive, was initially released in 2000 to rave reviews and has received several follow-up installments since. Revolving around Agent 47, the stealth video game series follows the cloned assassin-for-hire as he is hired by wealth and elite clients thanks to his flawless record. The cross-platform game franchise also features two novels, Hitman: Enemy Within and Hitman: Damnation, both written by William C. Dietz. The series also saw the loosely based film adaption, Hitman, in 2007, and again in 2015 with Hitman: Agent 47.

Agent 47: Birth of the Hitman #1 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors’ August 2017 Previews catalog, the premier source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market, and slated for release in October. Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Agent 47: Birth of the Hitman #1 with their local comic book retailers. Agent 47: Birth of the Hitman #1 will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, Kindle, iBooks, Google Play, Dynamite Digital, iVerse, Madefire, and Dark Horse Digital.

About Dynamite Entertainment:

Dynamite was founded in 2004 and is home to several best-selling comic book titles and properties, including The BoysThe ShadowRed SonjaWarlord of MarsBionic Man, A Game of Thrones, and more.  Dynamite owns and controls an extensive library with over 3,000 characters (which includes the Harris Comics and Chaos Comics properties), such as VampirellaPanthaEvil ErnieSmiley the Psychotic ButtonChastity, and Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt.  In addition to their critically-acclaimed titles and bestselling comics, Dynamite works with some of the most high-profile creators in comics and entertainment, including Kevin Smith, Alex Ross, Neil Gaiman, Andy Diggle, John Cassaday, Garth Ennis, Jae Lee, Marc Guggenheim, Mike Carey, Jim Krueger, Greg Pak, Brett Matthews, Matt Wagner, Gail Simone, Steve Niles, James Robinson, and a host of up-and-coming new talent.  Dynamite is consistently ranked in the upper tiers of comic book publishers and several of their titles – including Alex Ross and Jim Krueger’s Project Superpowers – have debuted in the Top Ten lists produced by Diamond Comics Distributors.  In 2005, Diamond awarded the company a GEM award for Best New Publisher and another GEM in 2006 for Comics Publisher of the Year (under 5%) and again in 2011.  The company has also been nominated for and won several industry awards, including the prestigious Harvey and Eisner Awards.

About Gunpowder Studios:

Gunpowder Studio is an independent production house based in Europe determined to produce properties that inspire, move and entertain.  Their mission is to build rich immersive worlds, nurture stories and weave powerful narratives that resonate with audiences all over the world.  Producers Jean Pierre Magro and Rune Bendixen have developed transmedia outlets for Disney, LEGO, Audi, SONY, Warner, Mærsk, Universal, Carlsberg, Toyota, BMG, Vestas and Red Cross.

About IO Interactive:

IO-Interactive is the creative force behind some of the most talked-about multiplatform videogames to emerge in the last two decades. Starting with the praised and ground-breaking Hitman series, IO-Interactive has since developed the cult classic Freedom Fighters, the controversial Kane & Lynch series and the adorable Mini Ninjas. Dedication to creating original IP and unforgettable characters and experiences are the hallmarks of IO-Interactive.

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