Jim Lee is a multi-talented industry vet with many projects on the go.

Jim Lee is a man who wears many hats.

By day he is the editorial director for Wildstorm Productions, a highly successful imprint of DC Comics — and he’s also a creative consultant for one of the most highly anticipated online games ever devised.

By night he is one of the most gifted artists in the world of comic books, penciling the hot new series All-Star Batman And Robin, The Boy Wonder (written by Frank Miller) and the re-launch of his 1990s bestselling series, Wildcats.

After red-hot runs in recent years on Batman and Superman, what prompted Lee, the comic book guest of honour at this weekend’s Fan Expo Canada at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, to return to his signature title?

“I haven’t really worked on this material, hands on, in eight or nine years, so going back is really nostalgic,” Lee, 42, said in a telephone interview from California. “But I don’t think I would have done it for that reason alone.

“Lately almost all of my projects have been driven by my desire to work with some of the best writers in the business and we were able to get Grant Morrison [JLA, New X-Men] — a super-creative, super-imaginative guy. When he signed aboard, that’s what really sealed the deal for me.”

Lee’s work on the forthcoming DC MMORPG (Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game) is something he is also very passionate about.

“When DC was going to set up an MMO deal, I threw my hat into the ring and said ‘I have experience with this, I have passion for this and if you need someone to help guide it creatively please call me up,’” Lee said.

“I’m involved with it more than just on the art side. I’m helping with game play, what the game will be like, what makes it fun, what the goals are, how we guide the player through the game and what the DC Universe is like.”

Editorial director, gaming consultant or artist — which hat fits Lee the best?

“There’s a reason why I still draw the comics and that’s because I think that’s my real core link to the industry. I love guiding a lot of projects editorially, working on the game is a real hoot, but I find drawing the most challenging. For me, telling a story through pictures and making it seem like characters are moving and seeing explosions and feeling the rumble, — that’s still what gets me off.”

Today's Comic Book Coverage:

  • suggested Jim Lee reads:

    • Absolute Batman: Hush

    • X-Men Visionaries: Jim Lee

    • X-Men: Mutant Genesis

    • Fantastic Four: Heroes Reborn (2006 Edition)

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