Due to the purchase of Valiant by Chinese investment firm DMG, Eric Heisserer has left the publisher and will no longer be co-writing Harbinger Wars 2.
One of the biggest comic book stories of the year (so far) has been the purchase of Valiant Comics by Chinese investment company DMG. As reported by The Hollywood Reporter last month, DMG already owned 57 percent of the company but decided to go ahead and buy up the rest despite Valiant’s best efforts to stop them.
Valiant CEO Dinesh Shamdasani left the company almost immediately thereafter and word at the time was that he wouldn’t be the last.
Despite the massive upheaval, DMG CEO Dan Mintz said that he wasn’t planning to make changes to the publishing side of things. This was more a move to compete with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the DC Expanded Universe in theaters, specifically theaters located in China.
However, it would appear that the publishing side of Valiant is beginning to feel the effects of the buyout anyway.
It is being reported by Bleeding Cool that writer Eric Heisserer, who was the screenwriter on Arrival, has decided to leave the company and as a result will not be co-writing Harbinger Wars 2 with Matt Kindt. Word is that Heisserer made the decision the same day it was revealed Shamdasani would be leaving the publisher.
Harbinger Wars 2 was supposed to be Valiant’s big summer event book, with each of the four issues being 44 pages long for just $3.99. Half of each issue would be written by Kindt with art by Tomás Giorello and the other half by Heisserer with art by Raúl Allen.
It was an aggressive way to publish a big miniseries and one that was garnering lots of positive buzz from fans.
Unfortunately, it looks like Harbinger Wars 2 will now follow a more traditional publishing format.
The miniseries will now include a prelude and an epilogue with just the prelude being written by Heisserer. The rest of the series will be written solo by Kindt and instead of showing the conflict from two different points of view as originally intended, the series will evidently now adhere to a more typical super mega crossover event mentality.
And I have a gnawing in my gut that this won’t be the last time you hear about Valiant creative talent leaving the company due to the DMG buyout.
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Like many fans of Valiant, I had a bad feeling that something like this was coming once this acquisition was announced. The publisher had one of the more original, vibrant comic book universes out there and now, in a quest to sell movie tickets to Chinese audiences, that looks to be coming to an end.
The Harbinger Wars 2 prelude arrives in comic shops and digitally on May 2, just before Free Comic Book Day. The first issue hits store shelves later the same month.