This past weekend was Tokyo Comic Con, and with it came some news about one of Japan’s most celebrated superheroes. Marvel Comics and Tsuburaya announced a new partnership that will see the House of Ideas producing new adventures for Ultraman, the hero of Tsuburaya’s Ultra Series. The comics will focus on the original version of Ultraman as he first appeared in the late ’60s. While no creative teams have been announced for the forthcoming comics, Marvel and Tsuburaya did release a piece of promotional art by artist Alex Ross featuring Ultraman battling a kaiju.
In a pair of statements, Marvel editor-in-chief C.B. Cebulski and Tsuburaya CEO Takayuki Tsukagoshi expressed their excitement over the new partnership:
“As one of the world’s most popular franchises, Ultraman has brought together some of the most passionate fandoms in pop culture today, and we can’t wait to bring his story to even more fans around the globe,” said Marvel Editor-in-Chief C.B. Cebulski. “Like Marvel, Ultraman captivated generations by telling spectacular stories grounded in the real world, and it continues to be a beloved classic through its television shows, movies, toys, games, comics, and more. We are so thrilled to introduce new chapters to the Ultraman Multiverse next year.”
“We are delighted to announce the partnership with Marvel, one of the leading entertainment companies that has produced fascinating characters and stories loved by fans across the globe for over 80 years,” said Tsuburaya Productions CEO Takayuki Tsukagoshi. “We can’t be more excited to explore and create new stories for the Ultraman franchise with Marvel and bringing them to both Marvel and Ultraman fans all around the world.”
The partnership with Tsuburaya is the latest such deal for Marvel, which earlier this year announced a licensing agreement with Games Workshop to produce new Warhammer comics and graphic novels. It’s also another in-road into the Asian market for Marvel following the publisher’s introduction of a high-profile pair of Chinese superheroes, Aero and Sword-Master, who debuted in a series of online comics before joining the All-New Agents of Atlas during the War of the Realms event.
Numerous iterations of Ultraman and the Ultra series have been produced since the character’s introduction in 1966. An Ultraman manga debuted in Japan in 2011; the series has sold millions of copies, and was adapted into a Netflix series that released earlier this year.
Look for more information on Marvel and Tsuburaya’s new Ultraman comics in 2020.