Tributes are pouring in from pop-culture luminaries in honor of Len Wein, the Wolverine co-creator who died Sunday at 69.
The New York native was a writer and artist who started working in the comic-book industry in the late 1960s and made his biggest mark in the 1970s. Wein introduced the cult favorite Swamp Thing with artist Bernie Wrightson in 1971 when working for DC Comics, and then Wein moved to Marvel Comics, where he debuted the popular character Wolverine in a 1974 issue of The Incredible Hulk and had the clawed superhero as part of a relaunched X-Men comic a year later.
In the 1980s, Wein edited writer Alan Moore's run on Swamp Thing as well as Moore and artist Dave Gibbons' seminal series Watchmen. He also was very involved with DC's Before Watchmen prequel project in 2012.
"The work I've done is my legacy," Wein told USA TODAY five years ago. "Anytime the thing I have created or had a major hand in continues to thrive three decades later tells me when I'm gone, it'll still be around. The work will be remembered, and that counts for a lot."
Actor Hugh Jackman, who played Wolverine in nine movies beginning in 2000, tweeted on Sunday that he was "blessed" to have known Wein. "From his heart, mind and hands came the greatest character in comics."
Blessed to have known Len Wein. I first met him in 2008. I told him - from his heart, mind & hands came the greatest character in comics. pic.twitter.com/cFqL1uy0JV— Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman) September 11, 2017
Joss Whedon paid tribute to Wein's legacy revamping the X-Men and how he "co-kickstarted the modern comic-book era with its most powerful metaphor."
Co-created Wolverine & the new X-men. Co-kickstarted the modern comic book era with its most powerful metaphor. And more. RIP Len Wein. pic.twitter.com/TSiWChvfdI— Joss Whedon (@joss) September 10, 2017
And Neil Gaiman called Wein his "writing inspiration" and "one of the nicest people" he met during three decades in comics. "He showed 12-year-old me that comics could be literature."
Len Wein. He wrote Swamp Thing, Phantom Stranger, & my favourite Batman stories. He showed 12 year old me that comics could be literature.— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) September 10, 2017