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Alex Ross Coffee Table Book

Pantheon Books, a division of the Knopf Publishing, has announced plans to publish a coffee table book showcasing Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, the Justice League, and other DC Comics icons as presented by Alex Ross, the artist renowned for his "photo-realistic" painting style.

The boo, entitled Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross, will be written, designed and art-directed by Chip Kidd. It is the first time a hardcover trade volume featuring a single artist's vision of the DC Comics universe has been published outside the comics market. Ross has won nearly every art award in the comics field, including multiple Eisner Awards, for work such as The Marvels, Kingdom Come, covers of Kurt Busiek's Astro City and more.

The 256-page book will document Ross' career at DC (he has also worked for other publishers, such as Marvel Comics, where he produced Earth X and The Marvels) and will include hundreds of never-before-seen sketches and new material, including an original Superman and Batman story written by Kidd, and a re-telling of Robin's origin written by Emmy Award-winning writer/producer Paul Dini (Batman: The Animated Series). Geoff Spear, the award-winning photographer (Peanuts: The Art of Charles M. Schultz, The Little Friend, Seek My Face) shot all of the material from Ross' original artwork. M. Night Shymalan, writer/director of Signs, Unbreakable and The Sixth Sense, is writing the introduction. 

"Alex portrays his characters as human beings," said Shymalan. "They are affected by the events in their lives in real ways. You can see both the strengths and the weaknesses in his heroes, making them more universal."

"Alex's unique style combines the best of the fantastic and the real, creating a world where myths walk...and leave tangible footprints in the sand," said Paul Levitz, DC Comics' executive vice president and publisher.