Spider-Man creator wins landmark case
The creator of Spider-Man has won a landmark legal case against comic book company Marvel for a share of the profits from its the film and TV adaptati
17:05 20 January 2005
The creator of Spider-Man has won a landmark legal case against comic book company Marvel for a share of the profits from its the film and TV adaptations.
A US judge has upheld Stan Lee's request for ten per cent of the profits yielded by the movie franchise and television spin-offs.
With Spider-Man and its sequel having pulled in $1 billion (857 million) at box offices around the world, this share could stretch into tens of millions of dollars.
Lee is also entitled to a share of the DVD sales, although his claims to a share of certain movie merchandise will be considered at a future trial.
The 82-year-old, who came up with the idea for the part-man, part-spider character in 1962, welcomed the ruling from Marvel, where he worked for more than 60 years.
"I am gratified by the judge's decision although, since I am deeply fond of Marvel and the people there, I sincerely regret that the situation had to come to this," he said.
Lee is also responsible for the creation of the Incredible Hulk, X-Men, Daredevil and Fantastic Four characters.
He sued Marvel in 2000 for breach of contract over the ten per cent claim, which he said was based on an agreement made two years previously.
Marvel said that he was not entitled to this share of the first Spider-Man movie and said they had been paying him a salary of 1 million a year for a 15-hour-week instead.