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Archie Comics re-launches Stan Lee imprint - with help from long-time Batman movie producer

(Image credit: Stan Lee Universe)

Archie Comics is re-launching their short-lived 2010 Stan Lee imprint for a new line based on the recently-organized Stan Lee Universe project. The Stan Lee Universe is a partnership between Genius Brands and POW! Entertainment - the latter of which owns the right to many of Stan Lee's post-Marvel creations.

(Image credit: Stan Lee Universe)

"It is only fitting that the comic book roots of Stan Lee, which began with Marvel, give birth to the next generation of great Stan Lee properties. I have long felt that the greatest Stan Lee characters and stories have yet to be told, and the next Marvel has yet to be built. That is Stan Lee Universe," Genius Brands' chief creative officer/chairman Andy Heyward said in the announcement. "Archie Comics are everywhere. You can’t go to a supermarket checkout stand and not see them, and soon that will be the same with Stan Lee Universe."

This is a reunion of sorts, as back in early 2010 Lee, POW!, Heyward, and Archie partnered for a line of Stan Lee Comics launching with Stan Lee's Mighty 7.

The flagship title of Archie's Stan Lee Universe line will be a comic book based on the previously-announced animated series Superhero Kindergarten, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and written by Fabian Nicieza. That team-up might sound familiar, as back in 2011 a project called The Governator by Schwarzenegger, Heyward, and Lee was announced to be a comic book series for Archie's original Stan Lee line. That comic book was never released.

(Image credit: POW! Entertainment)

"I had the great pleasure of knowing Stan Lee and understanding his genius," Archie Comics chief executive officer/publisher Jon Goldwater says in Wednesday's announcement. "Getting the chance to partner with Andy and Genius Brands to introduce an entire universe of Stan Lee ideas to the comic book and graphic novel marketplace is an opportunity we can’t pass up."

Long-time Batman film producer Michael E. Uslan - who has also written for Archie Comics - has been tapped to head up development of the Stan Lee Universe project, including its comics. Uslan was previously involved in Lee's partnership with DC for the 2001-02 line of Stan Lee's Just Imagine...

"In my world, there is no bigger honor than to be entrusted to carry the mantle of Stan Lee forward, Uslan says. "This is taking the Olympic torch on the final leg up Mt. Olympus. We look forward to bringing the most talented writers and artists in our field to the next generation of Stan Lee creations."

A release date hasn't been specified for Superhero Kindergarten, however the graphic announcing the line's launch lists a July 2020 release date on the comic book's cover.

Chris has covered comic book news for Newsarama since 2003, and has also written for USA Today, Life, Publisher's Weekly, Marvel Entertainment, TOKYOPOP, AdHouse Books, Cartoon Brew, Bleeding Cool, Comic Shop News, and CBR. He is the author of the book Modern: Masters Cliff Chiang, co-authored Art of Spider-Man Classic, and contributed to Dark Horse/Bedside Press' anthology Pros and (Comic) Cons. He has acted as a judge for the  2019 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards and the 2012 Stan Lee Awards. Chris is a member of the American Library Association's Graphic Novel & Comics Round Table.