Warner Bros Retain Commercial Control Over Superman
What’s the biggest Superman news of 2013? The new film called Man of Steel starring Henry Cavill as the red-caped-hero, due for release on June 14? WRONG, it’s the court case won today by Warner Bros.
In winning the case, Jerome Siegel's heirs must abide by a 2001 letter accepting Warner's offer for their 50% share of Superman. Superman's co-creators, Joe Shuster and Siegel, have been battling higher compensation for the comic book creation for years. "The court's decision paves the way for the Siegels finally to receive the compensation they negotiated for and which DC has been prepared to pay for over a decade," said a statement from Warner Bros, on behalf of its DC Comics division. "We are extremely pleased that Superman's adventures can continue to be enjoyed across all media platforms worldwide for generations to come." Judge Stephen Reinhardt, of the 9th US Circuit of Appeals, wrote both parties "had resolved the last outstanding point in the deal during a conversation on Oct 15, 2001". He added the letter "accurately reflected the material terms they had orally agreed to on that day,"
Both sides had claimed the ability, under a provision of copyright law, to reclaim rights previously granted to Warner Bros. The studio argued, with ultimate success, that its 2001 agreement, though never memorialized in a formal contract, obviated those "termination rights."
Check out the Man of Steel trailer below: