To celebrate the 1,000th issue of Action Comics — the title that first introduced the world to Superman — DC is releasing a harcover tie-in book: Action Comics #1000: 80 Years of Superman. The comic book itself, Action Comics #1000, will hit shelves on April 18 and is the first title to ever reach to reach the 1,000-issue milestone. It will also mark the DC debut of Brian Michael Bendis, the celebrated Marvel veteran who created characters like Jessica Jones and Miles Morales.
Edited by former DC publisher Paul Levitz, 80 Years of Superman (Jim Lee’s full cover can be seen below) will feature 384 pages of essays on the hero and classic Superman stories — including a previously unpublished one by his original creators, Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel.
“The found Siegel and Shuster story is a true treasure with a fascinating backstory,” said Levitz in a statement. “Back when DC did regular tours of the New York office, it was common for fans to get original art that would have been otherwise disposed of as a tour souvenir. As a young fan on a tour [Blade and New Teen Titans creator] Marv Wolfman found this Superman story and kept it all these years. It’s incredible to think that Marv not only rescued this unpublished story, he then went on to become one of DC’s most prolific writers, and shared the story with DC to publish as part of this special new collection.”
As for the aforementioned essays, contributions were made by Levitz (an editor’s note), Siegel’s daughter Laura Siegel Larson (a tribute to Action Comics), cartoonist and Will Eisner’s former assistant Jules Feiffer (introduction), Tom DeHaven (It’s Superman!), David Hajdu (The Ten-Cent Plague), Larry Tye (Superman: The High-Flying History of America’s Most Enduring Hero) and Gene Luen Yang (SUPERMAN, NEW SUPER-MAN and the National Book Award finalist American Born Chinese).
Comic book stories will include over a dozen by Siegel, Shuster, Grant Morrison, Len Wein, Wolfman, Joe Kelly, Otto Binder, and more. The hardcover book, 80 Years of Superman, will be available on April 19 for $29.99, to coincide with the 1,000th issue. You’ll be able to pre-order it on April 11.