The creator of Ghost Rider, who is destitute after creating a character who has made millions for its Publisher, just lost a lawsuit over the rights to said character.
Not only is he not allowed to say he created the character, he is not allowed to profit in any way from the character. Worse, Marvel is demanding he pay back $17,000, money he clearly does not have, that he has made at conventions selling Ghost Rider prints. A guy off the street with no connection to Ghost Rider can sell Ghost Rider art at a con, for a commission, if he wants.
The CREATOR of Ghost Rider can’t. Can’t even say the name Ghost Rider in an interview that might lead to more work. Can’t profit in any way.
AND he has to pay back $17,000 he doesn’t have.
Marvel, I understand contracts are contracts. I understand that you want to protect your intellectual properties. But this is so purely punitive that there is no defense for it that works at all.
I know you guys have done the right thing behind closed doors in the past. I know no one wants to make a destitute creator pay money he doesn’t have that you won’t even notice. And what a gesture of goodwill it would be, before this blockbuster movie, to do the right thing here. We’re begging you. You have won the court case. Please let that be enough.
From Bleeding Cool:
Recently, Marvel triumphed in court against Gary Friedrich, the creator of Ghost Rider, as to whether any moneys or rights were owed to him from the use of the characters in movies, with the second movie starring Nicolas Cage on its way.
And while the court decided that Marvel owe Gary nothing, they also decided on a counter claim from Marvel, that Gary Friedrich owes $17,000 for selling prints of the Ghost Rider character at conventions and the like.
This represents Gary’s earnings from selling such prints over several years – but now Gary is penniless. And Marvel are demanding payment now. Oh, and that he is not allowed to say he is the creator of Ghost Rider for financial gain, say by doing an interview, in the future.
Marvel was recently bought by Disney for $4 billon. Nicolas Cage recently sold his copy of Action Comics #1 for over 2 million, and will have received similar for starring in Ghost Rider 2.
Gary Friedrich, the creator of Ghost Rider is, however, penniless.”