After eight years of helming DC Comics' Green Lantern stories, once freelance comic book writer and now DC Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns announced today that he will be turning his attention fully toward the Justice League titles and Aquaman following the conclusion of Green Lantern #20, which will be his last issue.In an essay on DC's blog, Johns thanked his artists and collaborators individually for their hard work, and noted the longevity of his run:

So here's the sad news: Doug Mahnke and I are closing the GREEN LANTERN SAGA that began with GREEN LANTERN: REBIRTH #1 with this May's 64-page GREEN LANTERN #20. As every storyline is coming to a head, it feels like the right time. The book is still doing great. The characters are as vibrant as ever. Let's go out how we started – on a high note.

Counting up between the GREEN LANTERN monthly series, REBIRTH, BLACKEST NIGHT and the various one-shots and specials...that makes over 100 issues of GREEN LANTERN I've had the absolute privilege, pleasure and fortune to write.

Johns has played a powerful role in DC's (and in turn, parent company Warner Bros.'s) rejuvenation of the Green Lantern franchise, specifically with regards to John Broome and Gil Kane's Hal Jordan, whom Johns brought back from the dead in the 2004-2005 Green Lantern: Rebirth; his first proper GL collaboration with artist Ethan Van Sciver.

From creating a new Lantern Corps for every color in the rainbow to helming DC's definitive, line-wide (and GL-centric) Blackest Night and Brightest Day events, Johns expanded the role of Hal Jordan in the DCU exponentially and served as one of the driving forces behind the publisher's wider lore leading up to the New 52 relaunch.

The fact that moviegoers actually had a chance to go see a big-budget Green Lantern film centering around Hal Jordan is due largely to Johns and artist collaborators such as Van Sciver, Ivan Reis, Patrick Gleason and many others success with the characters in comics (and perhaps that its failure came from not emulating his take). The same could be said of the recently canceled Green Lantern CG animated series.

Johns' most recent GL story arc introduced Simon Baz, the latest Green Lantern in the New 52, and one of the most high-profile Arab-American characters in mainstream superhero comics. Johns has confirmed that he will continue scripting Baz in his work on Justice League of America, with art by David Finch, but it's unknown whether the character will continue to hold center stage in the main Green Lantern title once Johns departs.

Johns hasn't named his replacement for the main GL title yet, but with June's solicitations just a month away, DC will likely make an announcement soon.

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