Last August, Stan Lee Media Inc. filed a lawsuit against the producers of the latest ‘Conan the Barbarian’ film. It wasn’t long before Conan Sales Co., the company that bought the rights from Stan Lee Media fired back.
The allegations from Stan Lee Media (which currently has nothing to do with Stan “The Man” Lee) were that, when they filed for bankruptcy back in 2001, the rights to all their holdings, including Conan, were supposed to have been frozen until the bankruptcy was resolved. That didn’t stop Arthur Lieberman, a former SLM attorney, allegedly sold the rights of the Conan character to Conan Sales Co.
Then, when the ‘Conan the Barbarian’ film was released, Stan Lee Media, which had been trying to revitalize its company after the bankruptcy filed a lawsuit against the producers of the film claiming that the rights should never have been sold and so still belonged legally to SLM.
Yesterday, US District Judge Stephen Wilson dismissed the bid from SLM, stating that Lieberman had not acted improperly during the bankruptcy or the sale of the character.
But Stan Lee Media isn’t stopping with Conan. On March 8, the company will appear before a 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals to try and claim the rights to Spider-Man, The Avengers, The Fantastic Four, and other Marvel characters created by Stan Lee. Of course, now that Marvel is under the wings of Disney lawyers, I don’t see that lawsuit coming out in SLM’s favor either.