A subpoena was issued earlier this week by the United States District Court in California against Stan Lee in the lawsuit by Stan Lee Media, Inc. (SLMI) against The Walt Disney Company (USDC Colorado, case 12-cv-02663). The multi-billion dollar lawsuit claims that it is SLMI, not Disney/Marvel, that owns the rights to characters that Lee owned, but then transferred to Marvel in the late ’90s. It was prior to this that Lee founded SLMI (which would later fail), the shareholders of which are claiming Lee signed the rights over to them and therefore never had the rights to transfer to Marvel, which would then go own to be owned by Disney, including iconic properties such as Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, Iron Man, X-Men, Thor and the Incredible Hulk, amongst others.
According to the subpoena, Lee is ordered to offer a deposition in the case on February 19. In addition, Lee is being asked to produce documents including all communication between himself and Disney, Marvel or Stan Lee Media pertaining to the issue as well as communication between SLMI and Disney or Marvel along with financial and corporate information for SLMI, all dating back to 1998.
Following Stan Lee’s recent appearance at Wizard World Anaheim Comic Con, Stan and his company POW! Entertainment (PK: POWN) are pleased to confirm today two new exciting announcements for the company. POW! Entertainment’s project with Walt Disney Studios Time Jumper, the multi-platform digital comic book about a college student who must protect the time travel device his father invented, has been made available on the PlayStation network as of March 31. This will allow audiences around the world to access the 10 episode compilation for $9.99 and play it on their PlayStation 3 or any PlayStation portable device.
POW! Entertainment is also confirming a first ever theatre/rock opera show, which will be an original concept from Stan Lee titled The Yin and Yang Battle of Tao. The storyline for the show is currently being written, and there are more details to come.
Stan Lee had anticipated being able to make these two announcements from the press room this past weekend in Anaheim, but this was not possible following his appearance. Stan was inundated with questions and other requests from the attendees, making it impossible for him to visit the press room to make these announcements from POW! Entertainment.
Gill Champion, President of POW! Entertainment said, “We are delighted to share today these two exciting new developments from POW! Entertainment. We believe it re-enforces our commitment to being a well-rounded multimedia entertainment company. We are excited that the life cycle for Stan Lee’s Time Jumper will now expand into the gaming realm. We are also looking forward to moving into the theatre world with our own original live show.”
Stan Lee added, “Thank you to all of the fans who attended this weekend. My only disappointment was that I wasn’t able to share these two projects with all of you in person. Here’s to even greater things in the future!”
The Walt Disney Company is a minority shareholder in POW! Entertainment.
Building on an already successful three year creative and business relationship, POW! (Purveyors of Wonder) Entertainment Inc. (Pink Sheets: POWN), the advanced media and entertainment company led by comic book and motion picture icon Stan Lee, announced today it is deepening its ties with The Walt Disney Company.
“Enhancing our relationship with one of the world’s most creative and innovative entertainment companies makes perfect sense given all the exciting projects we have underway,” said Lee, Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of POW! “Disney has been a great partner for us and we look forward to working closely with them in the coming years. In addition to the huge creative opportunity this affords POW!, it also provides for the next positive stage in the expansion of the company itself.”
Walt Disney Studios entered into a first-look deal with POW! in 2007 and since then has worked closely with the world-renowned Lee on the development of a number of projects. Under the new arrangement, Walt Disney Studios expands that relationship through enhanced rights to the creative output of POW! as well as certain exclusive consulting services. Disney will also take a 10% equity stake in POW! for $2.5 million.
Earlier this year, Disney agreed to acquire Marvel Entertainment Inc., the company that owns the most iconic characters associated with Lee, including Spider Man, The Incredible Hulk and X Men. Marvel shareholders were expected to vote today on the transaction.
“Stan has incredible creative energy and continues to come up with great original stories that can work across many of our platforms, ranging from console games to motion pictures and from our boys-focused Disney XD network to mobile devices,” said Bob Chapek, President, Worldwide Distribution, Walt Disney Studios. “Put that together with his knowledge and familiarity of the Marvel universe and it makes perfect sense to extend our excellent working relationship with Stan and POW!”
Note: For information on Stan Lee’s Time Jumper, please read our introduction article here.
Title: Stan Lee’s Time Jumper (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: August 10, 2009
Pros: Free!, it’s Stan Lee!, extras add to fun
Cons: Future editions aren’t free
Review: How does one animate a comic book while not turning it into a cartoon? Comics legend Stan Lee introduces us to his joint project with Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, Time Jumper, the story of a reluctant hero who must travel through time on a quest to save his brother while fighting the time threating enemies and problems of his own.
Disney has graciously provided us with the following artwork for the upcoming joint project with Stan Lee’s POW! Entertainment, Time Jumper (see link for more information).
As always, you can click on any thumbnail to see a larger version or click on the PicLens link to start the slideshow. Enjoy, true believers!
Images © Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.
Disney and Comics Legend Stan Lee Present Time Jumper Digital Comic Series; Premieres on iTunes July 24
BURBANK, Calif., July 21 — Legendary comic book creator Stan Lee’s POW! Entertainment, together with Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, today announced the release of an all new original digital motion comic series, Time Jumper, available exclusively on the iTunes store (www.iTunes.com), beginning July 24, 2009.
From the same visionary co-creator of Spider-Man, X-Men, Iron Man, The Hulk and Fantastic Four, comes a thrillingly modern tale about a young man who jumps through time and engages viewers in a multi-dimensional, multi-platform universe. Freed from the constraints of the traditional print comic book format, consumers can finally look forward to enjoying this adventure through a variety of popular media formats rolling-out over the next two years including, but not limited to, online, mobile, DVD, publishing and more.