Stan Lee And Marvel Sued Over Spider-Man

Stan Lee Spidey

In 2005, Stan Lee sued the company over profits from the first Spider-Man film. He won a $10 million settlement. Well, it seems the past returns. From our frivolous lawsuit department comes word from AZM Ally Greg that Stan Lee and Marvel are once again involved in an idiotic legal battle, only this time on the same side. Stan Lee Media Inc is suing both its founder, Stan Lee, and Marvel over film and comic profits totaling $750 million dollars.

Facepalm Piccard

Let’s rewind, shall we. On the back of the 90′s comic boom, in 1998 Stan Lee created Stan Lee Media Inc to create a line of internet super heroes that would star in their own animated comic. The company eventually went public. Sadly, by 2001 Stan Lee Media Inc was forced to close its doors thanks to stock manipulation charges levied against its corporate officer Stephan Gordon and Lee’s lawyer Peter Paul. Stan Lee Media Inc reemerged in 2006 with heads firmly up their ass.

In their suit against Stan Lee and Marvel, Stan Lee Media Inc alleges that Stan signed over ownership rights of characters he created for Marvel to Stan Lee Media Inc and that profits from any comics or movies made from those characters should go to them. This makes no sense. Stan created Spider-Man et. al under a work-for-hire contract. All the characters he created and co-created are the sole property of Marvel. Even if he wanted to, Stan can’t sign the ownership rights of those characters to anyone.

I hope the judge gets a big chuckle out of this because Stan Lee Media Inc has no leg to stand on. Idiots.

[Via BBC]

  • shareholder

    Before coming to a legal conclusion and calling the plantiffs idiots, it is sometimes helpful to read the pleadings and see the documents.

    First, let’s correct an obvious error. Stan’s attorney was Arthur Lieberman, not Peter Paul.

    Next, consider Marvel’s own bankruptcy. They voided Stan’s lifetime contract, which included the voiding of all of his rights assignments. Oct 1998 – Stan signed a contract with SLM that assigned all he owned or would own in the creative universe. Nov 1998 – Stan signs virtually an identical contract with Marvel. That one added a clause in which he warranted he had not assigned his rights to anyone else. Oops.

    A few weeks ago in federal court in Los Angeles, a judge ruled that POW! had no rights to the properties they looted from the SLM bankruptcy. That’s right, POW! has been making deals with properties it does not own.

  • shareholder

    For those who want to understand this case, rather than dismiss it out of hand, here’s where you can start reading:

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/4080912/Chronology-and-Schema-of-Assets-July-3-2008

  • http://www.sparebrainsgames.com Wayne

    Wow. This is going to kick up such a massive shit storm.

    Do I care? Only peripherally. I stopped reading Marvel & DC years ago.