June 04, 2012 9:30am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'The Walking Dead' No. 100 Variant Cover From Ryan Ottley (Exclusive)
Image/Skybound Comics is pulling out all the stops for the 100th issue of The Walking Dead.
Due in July, the standard issue will feature a collection of familiar corpses in an intense, wraparound black and white cover, with seven variant covers from some of the comic industry's A-list artists.
Among those contributing covers are Marc Silvestri, Todd McFarlane, Charlie Adlard (who designed the wraparound) and Ryan Ottley, a frequent collaborator with Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman on his other long-running Skybound comic, Invincible.
"When Robert asked me to draw a cover for The Walking Dead, he said the magic words: 'draw whatever you want.' So I was totally excited to do something 'action-y' with Michonne and her sword," Ottley says. "She's always been my favorite character in the book, and soon to be in the TV show as well. And it's always fun drawing zombie gore, especially with swords!"
With Ottley and Kirkman's Invincible set to hit the 100-issue mark in January, the executive producer of the AMC adaptation was quite taken with his vision for Walking Dead. "After working with Ryan Ottley for nearly a decade on Invincible, he still somehow manages to surprise me," Kirkman says. "His Walking Dead cover is absolutely amazing."
Check out the Ottley's Walking Dead No. 100 cover, below, exclusive to The Hollywood Reporter.
The variant covers will be available on July 11 in comic stores (hit up your local retailer for preorder information as they'll likely be in short supply) with one variant available starting the same day at San Diego Comic-Con and another to ticket holders forThe Walking Dead Experience.
Other artists contributing to Walking Dead variant covers include Frank Quitely, Sean Phillips and Bryan Hitch.