thanks to reader David Busby for inspiring that headline.
last week's little revelation
that Marvel Chairman Emeritus Stan Lee was considering legal
action against the company that he had only spent his entire
life building, he went ahead and filed suit.
will he be all smiles?
to an article in Variety, Lee claims that Marvel Entertainment
has embarked on a "…shameful scheme" to deprive him of his
profits. Along those lines, the suit demands ten million dollars,
and we can assume that's back pay for Spider-Man and
X-Men. (Remember that this all hinges upon a deal Stan
signed in 1998.) Unclear from the article is how the suit
covers future movie and television licensing deals.
picked a good time to pick his fight with Marvel, as they've
got another legal headache on the horizon: a superior court
overturned a ruling against Joe Simon's claim to ownership
on Captain America, allowing the Golden Aged writer/artist
to pursue the matter further. If you want the real reason
Captain America has not yet become an Artisan film, look no
further than this.
or not you think Stan has been treated fairly by Marvel (certainly
better than people like Jack Kirby were), this still makes
a gripping case.
Man @ Marvel
Bill Rosemann decided to go freelance, Marvel needed a new
Man. Sure, they kept Bill for a few weeks longer than he intended
to be (amicably, though, amicably) while they looked. And
at last the estimable Mr. Rosemann is free to move to Florida.
Mike Doran, co-founder of Newsarama, a site that admittedly
covers the industry much better than us. They've bounced around
over the years, and are currently an offshoot of Kevin Smith's
site, Movie Poop Shoot. We should assume Doran has left Newsarama,
and look forward to his work as the new Man@Marvel, or as
the official title has it, marketing communications manager.
Mike. Be kind to us.
Just Toys…But Kisses From Heaven…
they will be mine.
I'm still really embittered by the cancellation of the Watchmen
action figures from DC Direct. But that just goes to prove
that you should never cross a guy who worships a second-century
may have just completely made it up to us, this week announcing
figures from Mark Waid and Alex Ross' classic Kingdom Come,
to be released in the third quarter of 2003 (after the above
business news, it's hard to shake the corporate talk).
best of my knowledge, neither Waid nor Ross have a beef, justified
or not, against the powers that be at DC, so this WILL HAPPEN.
(oh it must it must it must)
Kills Two Teen Titles - But They're Like Hydras…
Sunday DC held a retailers' conference in Los Angeles and
announced their 2003 line-up. Among some surprises was the
confirmation of the impending end of Young Justice
and the no surprise at all Titans. But out of the ashes…
a Young Justice/Titans crossover mini-series, we'll
see the rebirth of the Teen Titans and The Outsiders.
Reviving the teen title makes sense, as a new Teen Titans
animated series is in the offing. (Notice how this week John
Stewart returns to continuity as a Green Lantern, wearing
a suspiciously animated uniform.) But The Outsiders?
will make both these books must buys is who DC has got working
attempt to write more books than Stan Lee in his heyday, Geoff
Johns will take on Teen Titans, teaming with newly
exclusive to DC Mike McKone, who has been doing great work
on Exiles. And McKone's partner on Exiles, Judd
Winick, will be writing the revival of The Outsiders.
for the latter team has not been fully revealed, but at this
point we do know that Nightwing will lead Batman's former
team. Once again, Dick Grayson can't help but follow in his
suddenly two books we weren't buying that will become two
more we have to buy. Doggone it! Too… much… quality…
Me Do Cartwheels Isn't Pretty…
announced at the retailers' conference, a new Authority
series (though we'll see how well editorial lets it run) and
completion of Planetary. Surely those fall under the
DC Phantasms category; they may still be the product of wishful
thinking for 2003. But one project that seems just right is,
at last, a Plastic Man graphic novel, done by a creator perfect
for the job: Kyle Baker. The only thing that could make it
better would be perhaps if Ty Templeton threw in a few jokes.
of a Man Called Dumbledore
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets opening this
week, rumors abound as to who will assume the role of Hogwarts'
headmaster when Alfonso Cuaron begins shooting the third film,
…and the Prisoner of Azkaban in March.
Lee has angrily denounced reports that he has been approached.
And with all due respect to Lee's immense talent, it is hard
to imagine him capturing the gentleness that Richard Harris
brought to the role. Chalk that rumor up to him just being
the hottest octogenarian actor in Hollywood. (Let's start
a new rumor: he's been cast to play Bruce Wayne in Batman
Beyond. Fly, my gossip monkeys, FLY!)
has come out and admitted that he was approached, but in typical
fashion has buried it in wit. Sir Ian McKellen reported on
his website that their had been a request from Warner Brothers
to "…filch Gandalf." However, this offer came before Harris
passed away a few weeks ago.
you decide that the studio was behaving tastelessly on the
heels of Harris' illness, remember that the actor had publicly
balked at being in an annually filmed franchise, and only
his grandchildren's wheedling kept him at it. If there's one
thing Warner Brothers is really good at, it's hedging its
the real question now is… is the offer to McKellen still good?
You Owe Me a Coke.
first time in the history of the 007 franchise, a character
will get a spin-off movie, which MGM hopes to build into a
separate film series. The lucky character? Halle Berry's new
Bond girl, Jinx.
as a female version of Bond, Jinx sure makes for a better-looking
updating of 007 than Vin Diesel. If MGM successfully launches
Jinx into her own series, this would mean a very crucial two
franchises for the struggling studio, as The Crocodile Hunter
didn't seem to take off like they'd hoped. But more on that
Anybody Else Just Disturbed By This?
that I speak
for film fans
everywhere when I say, "oh, grow up."
has selected Roberto Benigni's adaptation of Pinocchio
as its entry for the Academy Awards' Best Foreign Film consideration.
The live-action adaptation, starring the 47-year-old Benigni
as the adorable wooden puppet who wanted to be a real boy,
opens stateside in a dubbed version in December. This led
one over-excitable Italian film executive to hope that the
English cut would then qualify for Best Picture.
seen the trailer, you know that just might be an uphill battle.
Granted, Pinocchio and Benigni are national treasures, but
not in this nation. Yes, he got Best Actor a couple of years
ago, but since then most of the Academy has tried to pretend
that they weren't the ones who voted for him. Like both Titanic
and that weird kid in high school that was annoying but could
be amusing, it seemed like a good idea at the time.
a minute…I was that weird kid…
Clone Wars Have Begun…To Generate A Spin-off…
Knowles has scooped everyone on this, and though neither LucasFilm
nor Cartoon Network have confirmed it, it carries the whiff
of a good idea. (Considering our track record on rumors, that's
enough to kill its credibility right there.)
Harry reports that the two camps are in discussions to produce
a Clone Wars cartoon series to fill in the gaps between episodes
2 and 3. Read the actual piece here,
and remember that thought you must take it with a grain of
salt, we're betting that he's right and that grain is just
loaded with midichlorians.
To Hart, Cheek To Cheek
that they've signed Alan Cumming to star as one Mr. Nash in
Mr. And Mr. Nash, a detective series about a crime-solving
gay couple whose day job is interior design. Steve Martin
will executive produce through his company in conjunction
proud to be a part of Mr. And Mr. Nash, especially
the part where it's a big hit," Martin said.
on when the pilot will make it onto the schedule, but I had
to run this because I have a sweet picture of Cumming as Nightcrawler
with nowhere else to run it. Enjoy.
Back At The Hall of Justice
Brothers has announced that they will be releasing the Superfriends
on DVD and VHS on April 22nd, 2003. Other than that blanket
statement, no details have been released. But just because
I'm in that sort of mood, I'm hoping they include the episode
with Plastic Man.