This Is definetely some bad news. Cheif artist behind Image Comics “Haunt” Ryan Ottley (“Invincible”) says that he is calling it quits after issue #5 hits stands February 3rd. Details beyond the break on why Ottley decided to leave Image’s dream team behind and who exactly will be replacing him in time for issue #6 of the ongoing series. “Ryan got a little bogged down as he neared the work on issue #5 of ‘Haunt,’” Kirkman explains to Comic Book Resources. “It got to a point where doing the two books monthly was possible, but not necessarily beneficial to the enjoyment of his life. He had to work a little bit more than he cared to. He said that he had to leave one book, and ‘Invincible’ was the one he was doing the longest. He was really enjoying working on ‘Haunt’ with myself, Greg and Todd, and we were all sorry to see him go, but we certainly understand the need to squeeze as many minutes out of the day as possible.”
“My main focus has always been ‘Invincible,’ so ‘Haunt’ was more of a side thing that turned into more work than I imagined,” said Ottley. “I’ll probably still do an occasional side project here and there, but to take on another ongoing is something I won’t do again. I did 14 comics in 2009, and I need to keep it at around 10 to 12 a year in order to keep my sanity and keep the books looking as fresh as possible. Not that I think the issues I did look horribly bad or anything, because I did do my best on them, but being able to spend more time on each page and get proper rest would be nice.”
As far as a replacement for filling Ryans huge shoes Image already has that covered bringing in “X-Force”, “Spawn”, and “Creech” penciler Greg Capullo. Robert Kirkman, the series’ fulltime scribe had this to say about the addition of Capullo,
“I’ve been a huge fan of Greg’s work for a long time, I’ve been dying to see more work from him, so the fact that I’m going to be writing that work for him is pretty exciting. It’s very much like starting a new book, even though I’ve already been working with the guy already, but my excitement level is about up there with starting a new series with a new collaborator. I’m pretty stoked.”
It’s sad to see such a talent as Ottley go on the project, especially since he has so many fans on this series, but the addition of Capullo makes things a lot more tolerable. To read the full interview with Kirkman and McFarlane head on over to comicbookresources.