Muhammad Ali vs. Superman was part of DC’s oversized series All-New Collectors’ Edition, officially numbered #C-56.
By the late 1970s, Superman had already been paired in the comics pages with real-life American icons like John F. Kennedy, Steve Allen, Bob Hope, Jerry Lewis, Allen Funt, Don Rickles, and Pat Boone. He had even previously gone up against a real-life athlete, professional wrestler Antonino Rocca.
The book suffered numerous delays, going from an original publication date of fall 1977 to spring 1978. By the time the book was published, Ali was no longer World Heavyweight Champion, having been dethroned by Leon Spinks in February 1978.
In December 2009, DC Comics announced it would publish two hardcover reprint editions of Superman vs. Muhammad Ali in the fall of 2010. One edition reprinted the original story at its original treasury size, while a deluxe edition (featuring a new cover by Neal Adams) included additional content dating back to the original book’s publication. By 2018, the re-issue has had six printings, and Superman vs. Muhammad Ali has become one of DC’s best-selling comics.