Mark Millar may be best known for his creator-owned Millarworld comic books these days, but the writer made his name in American comic books revamping some of Marvel Comics’ top characters - the Avengers, the Fantastic Four, and X-Men - for its Ultimate Universe line. But as it turns out, Millar was tapped to revamp the mainstream X-Men books too, in a project that never came to fruition.
In the midst of cleaning his home office, Millar seems to have uncovered a treasure trove of work material on his classic Marvel Comics work, including everything from Wolverine’s “Enemy of the State” to “Old Man Logan” and more – including notes on the canceled X-Men revamp.
“Sorting my office and found a pile of notes from a project Marvel wanted [Bryan Hitch] and I to do after The Ultimates, a line-wide revamp of the X-Men line with Steve McNiven on the other book. How funny!!” Millar tweeted.
Sorting my office and found a pile of notes from a project Marvel wanted Hitchy and I to do after The Ultimates, a line-wide revamp of the X-Men line with Steve McNiven on the other book. How funny!! pic.twitter.com/mE7pshgE7gMay 30, 2020
Though Millar hasn’t made much of the content of the story pitch public, he explains that his Ultimates creative partner Brian Hitch would have drawn his X-Men series, while Steve McNiven would have drawn a second title. Interestingly, the pitch dates back to 2005, around the time Millar was working on Civil War with McNiven - the Marvel Comics limited series that altered the Marvel Universe and remains one of Marvel’s best-selling and impactful stories of all time.
Millar would have taken over the X-Men line shortly after the “X-Men: ReLoad” re-branding that kicked off in 2004 following writer Grant Morrison’s exit from the series. “ReLoad” centered on Chris Claremont’s X-Treme X-Men, Chuck Austen’s X-Men, and Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men. Millar wound up writing Wolverine, with the seminal story “Enemy of the State”, in May 2005.