And so one of the stranger chapters in comic-book lawsuits draws to a close.
Nearly a year ago, we told you about how Stan Lee Media was going (almost literally) for broke and filing a $5.5 billion lawsuit against Disney, effectively saying that they own the rights to all of Stan Lee's creations and have done so since they signed an agreement with Lee himself back in 1998.
Stan Lee's relationship with Marvel at the time was such that he did share the rights to some of his creations with them. And, according to Stan Lee Media, he signed over those rights to them.
Of course that was before the dot-com bust and before SLMI went bankrupt, right around the time Lee had transferred rights of his characters over to POW Entertainment.
But Stan Lee Media investor Michael Wolk has still been contending that the rights are with SLMI due to the employment agreement signed by Lee way back in '98.
It's been nearly a year now since the attempt to wrestle all those rights away from Disney began, but now, unsurprisingly, the lawsuit has come to a close. A real one.
Judge Martinez ruled summarily in favor of Disney, saying, “This Court holds that Plaintiff is precluded from re-litigating the issue of its ownership of copyrights based on the 1998 Agreement, which issue was decided against it.” Which is a nice way of saying, "It's over and don't come back into my courtroom over this nonsense ever again."
This isn't SLMI's first attempt to wrest money from Marvel, but it's probably the last. And that is okay by us!
(via Bleeding Cool)