Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips Extend Image Comics Deal

Criminal cover-Publicity-H 2018
Sean Phillips/Image Comics
The 'Fatale' and 'Criminal' creators have signed up for another five-year period of Image releases.

Five years after Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips signed an exclusive deal with Image Comics to release all-new original work through the publisher, the two have extended the partnership, with the first fruits of the new deal beginning early next year.

Brubaker and Phillips were first teamed on DC Entertainment’s critically acclaimed series Sleeper in 2003, launching a collaboration that has continued through a number of projects traditionally rooted in the crime genre, including Criminal, Incognito and Fatale.

The duo signed an exclusive deal with Image in late 2013 and have produced three projects under that agreement: Hollywood period piece The Fade Out, supernatural crime series Kill or Be Killed and coming-of-age drama My Heroes Have Always Been Junkies, the first graphic novel collaboration for the pair. New Criminal material was also released during the period.

In a statement about the new pact, Brubaker — who has also written for the HBO series Westworld and co-created the upcoming Amazon series Too Old to Die Young — said: “The last five years at Image, with the freedom to just follow our creative instincts and do whatever we want to, has been the most successful time of our long career together. The Fade Out, Kill or Be Killed, My Heroes Have Always Been Junkies and the Criminal magazines have been our biggest hits so far, and — as I recently learned on my book tour — each one has brought our work to new readers. So I couldn't be happier that Image wants to sign us up for another five years.”

The first release in the new contract period will be the first issue of a relaunched Criminal series, available in comic stores and digitally Jan. 9.