Stan Lee Media sues for $750mil Marvel movie profits — UPDATE

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If you’re a lawyer, everything surrounding the strange history of Stan Lee Media is a fountain of endless, cool, refreshing litigation. Now “legendary” lawyer Martin Garbus is representing Stan Lee Media shareholders in a suit against Stan Lee, Ike Perlmutter, Avi Arad, and Marvel, alleging the shareholders are owed some $750 million in profits from Marvel’s movies based on Lee’s characters.

The shareholders of Stan Lee Media Inc claim in a lawsuit to be filed in New York that Lee, creator of Spider Man, Ironman and Incredible Hulk, transferred all his interest in Marvel characters to SLMI. That entity was placed into bankruptcy by Stan Lee in 2001 and re-emerged in November 2006 with new shareholders, who claim they are owed as much as $750 million.

Lee denies the allegations and has filed his own $50 million lawsuit against SLMI claiming the company has hijacked his name and image and is thwarting his effort to develop such properties as “The Accuser” and “The Drifter” and others via his first-look deals with Disney and Virgin Comics.


We may not be a lawyer, but if Garbus is going to try to prove that Stan Lee had any rights to his characters to ASSIGN to shareholders, we imagine he must also be having a mighty fine sale on bridges, as well. Stan long ago gave up any claim to Marvel characters, although it would be interesting to read the filings.

Other Stan Lee Media legal wranglings involve a previous attempt to sue Marvel for $5 billion, bankruptcy, an SEC suit against former CEO Peter Paul for stock manipulation during the last dotcom boom/bust, and many, many more murky matters, including a Hillary Clinton fundraiser that remains a cornerstone of Clinton-era conspiracy theorists. In fact, on his blog, Paul insists, as he long has, that this case will be a lid ripper of epic proportions:

The suit on behalf of Stan Lee Media, to be filed in Manhattan Federal Court shortly, will expose an array of corporate corruption, government misconduct, cover-ups and obstructions of justice involving former President Bill Clinton, Senator Hillary Clinton, federal Judge Howard Matz appointed by Clinton, the creator of Spider Man, Stan Lee, the Chairman and billion dollar shareholder of Marvel Entertainment, Isaak Perlmutter, and a major Wall Street Law Firm, among others.

This suit, and the reputation and skill of the legendary American lawyer who is bringing it, on behalf of shareholders of a dot com that has been at the center of the 2000-2005 Galagate scandal that caused Hillary Clinton’s finance director to be indicted and tried in 2005 for election law fraud, and finally cost Hillary Clinton the White House, should vindicate former Hollywood “mogul” Peter Paul’s efforts to blow the whistle on the corporate, political and judicial corruption he witnessed and documented since his Hollywood internet studio with pop culture icon Stan Lee, ran out of funds during the dot com melt down of December, 2000.


Yes, it never ends.

Update: Per the comments, I corrected the link to Stan Lee’s 1998 Marvel contract (also the basis of Stan’s 2002 lawsuit against Marvel.) The other link was to Stan’s 1998 agreement with Stan Lee Entertainment Inc, just one of dozens and dozens of lengthy legal documents you can read, that have, we’d guess, been uploaded by the current Stan Lee Media team as they seek to prove their claims of nefarious deeds.

In our very brief rundown of the legal shenanigans involving Stan Lee Media, we forgot Stan’s OWN suit against them. And probably a lot of other stuff. As much as we wish we could draw a pot of tea and spend the whole day digging into this, alas, we have other pressing matters, and we’ll leave you with this Barron’s article to bring you up to speed. We’ll note that someone is going around the web (and our own comments) to hint at further Stan/Pow! mischief.

AND ONE FINAL NOTE: We’ve been covering Stan Lee legal wrangling since 2002, and while we were researching this story, we were sad to find so much previous reporting (including our own) long scrubbed, In some ways, print is more eternal than the Web, boys and girls, and don’t you forget it.

Comments

  1. “I have lots of conjecture and heresay. Those are KINDS of evidence.”

    -Lionel Hutz

  2. inhumans99 says:

    Doh! At first, I read the headline as “Stan Lee Media sues for 750billion Marvel movie profits.” Still, should be fun to read about this latest lawsuit.

  3. Tom Spurgeon says:

    Is that the right link for the giving up rights? That looks to me like the assignation of rights to SLM, which is actually their big piece of evidence, not some giving of rights back to Marvel.

  4. shareholder says:

    The author of this piece may not know that 2 1/2 weeks ago, a federal judge in Los Angles ruled that POW! entertainment had no right to the properties it pulled out of the SLM bankruptcy. It violated the order of the BK judge when an insider transferred properties illegally to QED, a subsidiary of POW! What does that mean for all the deals Stan has made with Disney, ValCom, Virgin Comics, Spring, Vidiator, etc? He made deals with properties a federal judge has ruled he does not own.

  5. No, Martin Garbus does not have a bridge for sale. After Marvel voided Stan’s agreements in BK, however, he does have a substantial legal argument.

    If anyone wants to read the pleadings before making comments, here you go.
    http://spidermansrights.blogspot.com/

  6. Blackeye says:

    A lawsuit involving Stan Lee? Say it isn’t so, how can this be possible? Please…the corrupt eventually gets caught.

  7. I honestly can’t tell you how long I’ve been waiting for someone to unleash a “legal armageddon”.

    Different from my own plans. I spend every day waiting to bring about a “Legal Ragnorak”, and I wait with baited breath for the “Legal Jokulhaups”. Damn, those Northern Europeans sure do know their cataclysms.

  8. More trouble for Stan in Los Angeles. In the Los Angeles case, which relates to this case, the federal judge’s order was just released today. POW! Entertainment was not allowed to take the properties out of the SLM bankruptcy. Their actions are void. POW! has made deals with properties it doesn’t own.

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/11453965/Order-Denying-QEDs-MSJ-12009

  9. Oh no! Blackeye making another disparaging about Stan Lee again! Say it isn’t so! How can this be possible??

    Just shut up and make mine Marvel already!

    ~

    Coat

  10. Blackeye says:

    Hey Cary Coatney,

    I guess they are right, when they say “Love is blind.”

    ~

    Blac

  11. Well Blackeye – at least I’m not posting here under a stupid pseudonym everytime your dick gets hard whenever Heidi posts something about Stan Lee.

    What Stan ever do to you – rape your mom when you were a kid and you were tied up to watch?

    Yeah, in fact I do think Stan Lee is a genius. So what does that make you?

    ~

    Coat

  12. Blackeye says:

    Hi Cary Coatney,

    You’re right, I can see by your writing skills, that you are a man of razor sharp wit, great intellect and tact. Oh, I forgot to include class in that list.

    Why are you so angry? It sounds like you are a person of diminutive nature trying to get back at everyone who’s ever picked on you.

    Kisses sweetie!

  13. Blackeye – are you sure it isn’t the other way around? Do you usually answer a question with another question? I’m just trying to get to the root cause of why you have to post such negative shit ALL THE TIME??

    Maybe it wasn’t enough that Stan was defiling your mom – but was yelling “Excelsior” several times in the midst of the act. Maybe it’s all coming back to you in some psychotic flashback and you’re out to exact revenge. I dunno.

    I get angry at people who lodge stupid remarks hiding behind a mask who are absolutely gonadless while trying to insult me behind a false name. This isn’t the goddamn delphiforum!

    And you don’t know a goddamn thing about me. Up your ass!

    ~

    Coat

  14. Blackeye says:

    Hi Cary Coatney,

    What is it with you and your rape fantasies, and comments about things up my ass? It really is time to settle down and learn to curb your foul language. Once again I guess that sort of sums up your character, what else do I need to know about you. It’s okay to have heroes and defend them blindly, but attacking someone else because they have an opinion that doesn’t align with yours is ignorance.

    Cool off and try to get control of yourself, your comments are very tasteless and crude. Is rape supposed to be funny to you? Ask your mother if she thinks your your comments are appropriate.

  15. I have wondered about all the rage directed at Stan Lee. What’s the backstory, Blackeye?

  16. Blackeye, y’ know, I guess it’s people who post under a pseudonym and troll around saying the same exact negative thing ad nauseum about the same subject over and over brings out the ‘go fuck yourself’ in me.

    You kinda ask for it.

    We know you have a different opinion. We know you have shit to say about Stan Lee – but how many times are you come around posting the exact same thing? I mean. what holier than thou choir are you preaching to? WE GET IT ALREADY! YOU DON’T LIKE STAN LEE – and you probably have shit to say about Sara Lee, too.

    Now, I want to sit back and hear what you’ve got to say to rich. Now, what is the origin of all this stupid animosity about Stan Lee?

    ~

    Coat

  17. After Lee settled with Marvel for more than 10 mil in his own lawsuit against them, it is amusing to hear him now say he never claimed any rights. Here are a few examples of what he was saying then. You decide whether he claimed that he had rights.

    “Defendants [Marvel] were given the right and assumed the obligation to commercially exploit Mr. Lee’s characters.”

    Defendants [Marvel] received a “conditional assignment of Mr. Lee’s rights.”

    Mr. Lee “permitted Defendants [Marvel] to exploit his superhero characters.”

  18. Blackeye says:

    Dear Cary Coatney,

    Are you reading and UNDERSTANDING the article posted?

    nuff said

    ~

    Blac

  19. innocentbystander says:

    Help me understand something. If Lee had no rights to his characters, why did Marvel pay him off in his lawsuit? Did Marvel report that in its SEC filings?

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