Discussion in 'Doctor Who' started by chardman, Feb 19, 2013.
^ What legal hoops?
I'd never heard that Davies & co. wanted the Brigadier to appear earlier than he did, but the character of Lethbrdge-Stewart is not owned by the BBC.
Much like the Daleks and Terry Nation, the copyright on the Brig would be shared with Mervyn Haisman & Henry Lincon, who seemed to be (understandably) waiting for the right offer before they'd let him be used.
I assume they were the writers of the first UNIT story (or whatever serial introduced the Brigadier) to air during the Troughton years?
Argh, I always forget the British system were somehow the show doesn't retain the rights to the characters and stuff. In the US, this is a non-issue. If you write for a show, you know that you don't own what you're writing (I'm sure it's in the contract).
But, this never seemed to be an issue for the Brigadier character the other times he returned in the original series?
It's a puzzling thing. It's been said that Haisman and Lincoln wouldn't let the series use the Great Intelligence after the team had a falling out with the producers over, I think, "The Dominators," yet they let Lethbridge-Stewart be used left and right.
I'm not sure that rights were actually a factor for the Brigadier. His SJA appearance was a last minute thing after Freema Agyeman had to drop out, and was put together in eight days or less. It'd be quite a coincidence if that was the exact moment at which Haisman and Lincoln became amenable.
RTD does go on about the legal difficulties regarding the Brigadier in The Writer's Tale, and how Haisman and Lincoln were so uncooperative that RTD had at one point considered giving up.
They wrote the Web of Fear, which does introduce the Brigadier (although he's actually a Colonel) but not UNIT. In fact, a constant foil for Haisman and Lincoln is that since they don't own UNIT, someone they reject wanting to use the Brigadier can just go ahead and use UNIT and create their own ranking officer.
I thought part of the reason Haisman and Lincoln were so uncooperative regarding the Brigadier is exactly because BBC went ahead and constantly used him without their permission? Although, I suppose if there was truth to that they could always pursue legal action.
From what I understand, it's more Haisman than Lincoln (Henry Lincoln was, notably, the one member of the trio who wrote The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail who didn't join in with the unsuccessful attempt to sue Dan Brown for Da Vinci Code profits). It may be no coincidence that some of their other creations have finally returned to the series now that Haisman himself has passed on and the decisions are taken by his heirs (who don't feel his bitterness over The Dominators incident in quite the same way).
Could you give a page number or a general location for that? Before posting I looked in the index for references to the Brigadier, and found only two; page 400 where Davies gets the idea, and page 402 where Courtney is at the read-through. There's nothing in-between about any difficulties. There's also no entry for Haisman or Lincoln in the index.
Huh, just did a quick look through and couldn't find anything. I knew I read it somewhere.
It's apparently not quite that simple in the US, since Tom Paris got a new name in Voyager so they didn't have to pay Royalties in every episode for Nick Lacarno
I think the difference is in the US you get paid if they use your character but you don't get any say over what they do with it.
Ahhhh...OK, yea, havng to pay for a character's usage, is often enough of a deterrent in itself.
Makes me wonder how we finally managed to get a Brigadier action figure. Or, maybe that's why it took as long as it did.
Well, one of them's dead and the other one lost a lawsuit against Dan Brown...
As mentioned, Henry Lincoln was the Holy Blood writer who didn't join the other two in their case against Dan Brown, which meant he didn't have to pay the legal costs when it failed!
Also, in the US (or at least with Trek) it only applies to characters, not alien species. People like Gene L Coon or Maurice Hurley don't collect royalties whenever Klingons, Romulans or Borg are used.
But they were, I believe, on the permanent writing staff at the time - ie, salaried workers on a permanent contract - rather than freelancers contributing a single script. The key test case would, I guess, be whether Paul Schneider (who was a freelancer when he wrote Balance of Terror) does own the Romulans.
diankra, what was the "Dominators incident"?
Separate names with a comma.