Disney in Big Superhero Copyright Battle

by Nate Wooley | October 11, 2012 2:55 pm

Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS[1]) has made a great deal of money from superheroes over the last few years. With the success of numerous Marvel movies — including this year’s billion-dollar The Avengers — Disney has seen its bottom line enhanced by its 2009 acquisition.

Now ownership of Marvel’s characters is in dispute. Stan Lee Media — a defunct Internet company named after the creator of many of the popular characters — is suing Disney for billions in lost profits, reports The Los Angeles Times[2].

In the suit, Stan Lee Media makes the claim that it owns the copyright on the Marvel heroes created by Lee. Documents filed with the suit state that Lee signed a contract in 1998 assigning the rights to all characters he created to Stan Lee Media. Two weeks later, Lee signed a similar contract with Marvel Entertainment.

Stan Lee Media — where Stan Lee no longer is an officer — is claiming that its rights take priority because its contract was signed first.

More on Disney:

  1. DIS: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=DIS
  2. reports The Los Angeles Times: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-et-ct-stan-lee-disney-lawsuit-20121010,0,638971.story
  3. Why Disney’s All About the GOP: https://investorplace.com/investorpolitics/why-disney-is-all-about-the-gop-dis-casinos/
  4. Disney Unveils New Website, New Focus: https://investorplace.com/2012/10/the-mouse-has-a-new-online-house/
  5. Eeks! Disney Characters Look Anorexic in New Makeover: https://investorplace.com/2012/08/eeks-disney-characters-look-anorexic-in-new-makeover/

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