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Dark Horse Loses ‘Star Wars’ License to Marvel

Marvel takes over the publishing of new Star Wars comic books, with Dark Horse Comics losing the licensing deal it’s had for over 20 years.

Marvel will take over the publishing of new Star Wars comic books, with Dark Horse Comics losing the licensing deal it’s had for over 20 years, according to a report by Variety.

The rights to the sci-fi franchise will be handled by Marvel starting in 2015, giving Dark Horse the time to wrap up storylines in current series. The publisher’s first issue in the series was Tom Veitch and Cam Kennedy’s “Dark Empire,” in 1989.

Disney releases J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII on December 18, 2015.

Variety says the move to Marvel makes sense considering Disney owns the company. Marvel is no stranger to the series, having published the first comic books based on the original Star Wars trilogy for nine years, starting in 1977. “Star Wars #1″ sold more than 1 million copies.

In August, Dark Horse announced “The Star Wars,” a new book series based on the first draft of George Lucas’ screenplay for Star Wars.