A forgotten piece of comic book history is about to make its long-overdue return, with the announcement that Deadpool creator Rob Liefeld will develop new material for Futurians, a superhero team created by one of the men responsible for Marvel's X-Men.
The Futurians property debuted in 1983's Marvel Graphic Novel No. 9, written and drawn by no less a luminary than Dave Cockrum — the artist who had illustrated the first years of the All-New, All-Different X-Men, co-creating Storm, Colossus and Nightcrawler along with a number of different characters along the way. (Before that, Cockrum had worked at DC, helping transform that company's Legion of Super-Heroes into a fan-favorite property.)
The set-up of Futurians is that a future society known as the Terminus is attempting to change its history — and our present — by transmitting genetic information through time that gives people superpowers as a result. One man has sent his mind back in time to bring those with powers together in preparation for battles he knows as ancient history.
That first Futurians graphic novel, which Cockrum owned the rights to, was followed by an unfinished comic book series from independent publisher Lodestone Comics in 1985, which would be reprinted twice (in 1987 and 1995) by different publishers. Since then, however, the property has faded into obscurity before Tuesday's announcement, outside of a little-seen 2010 revival by David Miller Studios.
Under the new deal between Liefeld Media and Cockrum's estate, represented by Clifford Meth, Liefeld will develop Futurians for potential new comic, film and TV projects.
"Dave Cockrum's work at Marvel and DC defined my childhood and inspired me to be a comic book creator,” Liefeld said in a statement. "His influence on generations of fans cannot be measured. When Dave launched his creator-owned concept, The Futurians as a Marvel graphic novel, I was completely enthralled. These were some of the best and brightest new characters I'd encountered since The X-Men. The opportunity to bring The Futurians to the modern comic fan is both a thrill and an honor!"
Earlier this year, Liefeld announced a deal to bring his own Extreme Universe characters to the big screen with Akiva Goldsman and producer Graham King.