Superman Lawsuit Restarts

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Admiral_Young, Nov 19, 2010.

  1. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  2. Ar-Pharazon

    Ar-Pharazon Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    And yet it starts back up every time they plan another movie.
     
  3. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Well one of the things about the lawsuit is that the rights reverted back before 2012 so Warner Bros had to move their arses if they wanted to produce another movie. I think this is one of the reasons why the Nolan/Synder film has started up.
     
  4. Captain Craig

    Captain Craig Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'm so sick of this bullshit.
    Those damn heirs have been paid 2-3 times now for different things. I mean my god how many different ways can a judge look at this before even the courts say ENOUGH.

    I get it, the creators got what we see as pennies now but at the time it was very fair and standard practice. Warners paid them in the what, 60s and then 70's, with some very real money(again for the time).

    I see no reason these heirs deserve any more money. PERIOD.
     
  5. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    This is about Warners suing the lawyer for the Siegels for alleged misconduct, not about the rights to Superman as such.
     
  6. Hound of UIster

    Hound of UIster Vice Admiral Admiral

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    That a lie created by the heirs of Siegel and Shuster. The two were actually doing very well making at least close to thirty thousand per year from their work, which is close to half a million in our time.
     
  7. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Really? It isn't just the heirs who've complained about this; the creators did during their lifetimes. WB had to be publicly shamed into giving them pensions.

    The heirs should take WB for every penny they're legally entitled to, IMAO. No sympathy for the corporation here.

    Oh, and what they're "legally entitled to" is what we have courts to determine. Anyone who announces on a BBS that they know "what the law is" and what's "fair" is just blowing smoke.
     
  8. Captain Craig

    Captain Craig Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Even better. Being shamed or otherwise that while they the creators were alive got a pension from WB. THEY'VE BEEN PAID.

    FUCK THE GREEDY HEIRS and their third, fourth lawsuits.

    Not like the courts haven't made mistakes and misjudgements. :rolleyes:

    Your anti-big business fine, doesn't mean the families haven't been given $$$$$ then and in other lawsuits. How many lawsuits can actually be legally filed over and over and over one one property? Past that point for my patience.
     
  9. Nowhere Man

    Nowhere Man Commodore

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    I thought this was over the rights to the origin or something. If that is the case then Superman can be told without the origin. There's no need to rush the movie. I want to see this movie really bad, but I don't want to see it rushed and quality diminished.
     
  10. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Don't make assumptions like that one about what you don't know and you won't be embarrassed.

    That, in a nutshell, is what the vituperation against the plantiffs is about in this case anyway.

    There are just an awful lot of folks who react to potential interference with the delivery of pop culture product as if someone's threatening to cut off their air. One studio challenges another's ownership of a property; creators wanna get paid; a previously-beloved actor holds out over a contract issue and threatens delay of production on a movie or TV series - the reaction is always the same: damn them for throwing a little sand in the gears of the Machine that manufactures the drug.
     
  11. Captain Craig

    Captain Craig Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Not embarrassed. I'm not the one coming off as an ass putting [sic] out there like a grammar nazi.
    Thanks for being concerned.

    I'm not worried about Superman going away, he's not even in my top 10.
    It's that this is the third or fourth lawsuit on Supes. A very bad precedent is being set. I don't want to be seeing this crap with other characters in the decades to come by other heirs claiming a sob story.
     
  12. Tiny Timby

    Tiny Timby LIKE LIGHTNIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIING Administrator

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    Do you even understand what the estates have sued for?

    The litigation between WB / DC Comics and the estates of Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel is with regard to the termination of copyright filed by them about a decade ago. If the court rules that the termination was valid (and copyright termination is a perfectly legal action under to the Copyright Act), and that the termination extends to derivative works, such as film, animation, etc., then Warner Bros. and DC would lose all rights to Superman and have to write an enormous check to the families for past-due royalties dating back to 1999 (when the termination was filed). It's not "another lawsuit," it's the same thing that's been going on for ages.

    The other half of the coin is a lawsuit filed by Warner Bros. against their attorney, while claiming that he has a personal interest in his clients' victory. The attorney has counter-sued under California's anti-SLAPP statute. If he proves that the Warner lawsuit arises out of activities that fall under anti-SLAPP protection (essentially, that it's a malicious lawsuit), which is a pretty low burden of proof, then Warner Bros. will have to show that there is a reasonable probability that it will win on the merits of the overall case -- essentially meaning that the studio would have to put its entire Superman case on display, and then allow the opposition to respond. The judge could then throw WB's entire case out right then and there.

    It's a bit more complicated than RARGH GREEDY HEIRS RARGH. ;)
     
  13. Hound of UIster

    Hound of UIster Vice Admiral Admiral

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    What National did was peanuts compared to the fraud that Stan Lee pulled on Kirby and Ditko, conning them out of possibly millions or billions worth of art and intellectual property and actual creators credit.

    Jack Kirby is current dead, Ditko is so poor that has been reduced to using the original pages of his comics to line his windows and Stan Lee is living the high life. But since Stan is "the Man", nobody is going to speak out for Kirby and Ditko.
     
  14. timelord1010

    timelord1010 Captain Captain

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    I agree 100%. There has to come a time when a dollar amount is set and then the heirs have no further claims against the company. At the rate things are going Superman will be in the public domain before all of this court stuff is over.
     
  15. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Hopefully this really leads to the death of superman forever.
     
  16. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

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    Whether they were sufficiently paid in the 1930s is completely irrelevant to this case. Even if they'd been given millions, they would still have a right to the copyright under legislation passed in the 1990s.

    When Superman was created, the copyright was good for 56 years. Congress has extended that twice, in the 1970s and the 1990s, and in both cases they provided that in instances where the copyright was sold, it would revert back to its original owners, since the people who bought it had only paid for the right to own it for 56 years. Thus allowing the originators to be paid for the extended span of whatever it was they created.

    DC/Warners got their 56 years, and since 1994 they've continued to hold the copyright under the extension. If it hadn't been extended, it would be public domain, so DC/Warners doesn't have a leg to stand on. The copyright, by act of Congress, reverts to the Siegels (and, after 2013, to the Schuesters as well).
    Lee wasn't Marvel's publisher, that was Martin Goodman. And Lee doesn't own any of those characters anymore than Kirby or Ditko do; he just has a better contract.

    Moreover, Ditko, Objectivist that he is, doesn't believe he is due ownership of anything.
     
  17. timelord1010

    timelord1010 Captain Captain

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    It might not be greedy heirs but it is a greedy attorney who going by what WB is saying talked the heirs into backing out of agreements they had with WB. A court needs to set a final amount that WB has to pay that will give them complete control over the Superman character and end this once and for all.
     
  18. Tiny Timby

    Tiny Timby LIKE LIGHTNIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIING Administrator

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    Warner Bros. claims that's what happened, while Toberoff counter-sued under the anti-SLAPP statute (a SLAPP is "Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation;" essentially, Toberoff counter-sued on the grounds that Warner Bros. only sued him to get him off the case) and has denied the claims. Keep in mind that Warner Bros. only sued Toberoff after it retained attorney -- and renowned courtroom bulldog -- Daniel Petrocelli in the matter earlier this year, after preliminary hearings about the copyright terminations were not going in WB's favor.

    There are a lot of sides to this issue.
     
  19. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

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    The WB being so trustworthy in matters like this.
    That isn't within the power of the court. Under copyright law, the Siegels (and Schuesters) are entitled to copyright reversion; any resale or whatever of the copyright back to WB/DC is a matter between those two parties following completion of the reversion.
     
  20. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Did he ever get that bloody house built, then?