Comic Book Creators Chuck Wendig and Neil Gaiman Join Authors Working Group


The movement for Disney to reimburse royalties to authors has intensified, with several authors now forming a “intervention force“using the #DisneyMustPay hashtag to lobby the Mouse House.

Joining the working group means Neil gaiman, a legendary creator and author of comics, and Chuck wendig, a former Marvel comic book writer and Star Wars novelist (who was shot at anti-republicans tweets.)

The authors also join the fray Tess Gerritsen and Marie robinette Kowal.

The #DisneyMustPay hashtag started when it was reported that Alan dean foster, author of the first novel linked to Star Wars Shard of the Spirit’s Eye and innovations of the Extraterrestrial franchise, stopped receiving royalty checks from Lucasfilm after Disney purchased them.

“When a company buys another, it acquires its liabilities as well as its assets. You are certainly reaping the benefits of the assets. I would love my tiny share (although it’s not small for me), ”Foster said in November.

There has been a massive media backlash to Disney’s treatment of Foster, and it looks like Disney is working to remedy the situation with Mr. Foster through his blog.

However, it looks like Foster wasn’t the only author to stop receiving royalties from Disney. His case was just the loudest.

The “Writers Must Be Paid Task Force” alleges that other editors adjacent to Disney, including comic book publisher Boom! Studios, still owes the writers agreed royalties.

Authors may miss royalty statements or checks on a wide range of properties in prose, comics, or graphic novels. This list is incomplete and based on properties for which we have verified missing returns and royalty reports.

  • LucasFilm (Star Wars, Indiana Jones, etc.)

  • Boom! Comics (licensed comics including Buffy the Vampire Slayer etc.)

  • Dark Horse Comics (licensed comics including Buffy the Vampire Slayer etc.)

  • 20th Century Fox (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Alien, etc.)

  • MGM (stargate)

  • Marvel WorldWide (SpiderMan, Predator)

  • Disney World Editions (Buffy, Angel)

If you have not been paid or are missing royalty statements, these contracts must be honored. We urge all authors to review their statements to ensure they are in order.

In the case of Boom! Studios, they have released Disney comics based on classic Disney characters like Mickey, Donald, Goofy, Uncle Scrooge and Disney Afternoon comics such as Black wing duck for a number of years.

(Having worked at Disney Comics for a number of years myself, I was well aware that Disney did not pay royalties on anything created for these brands before accepting the job.)

According to Boom! Studios, they no longer owed royalties on Buffy the vampire slayer comic books because the license was transferred from another comic book publisher.

Fox originally licensed the comic book rights to Dark Horse, but when Disney bought Fox the rights were taken from Dark Horse and given to Boom! Comics. The writer said they had been informed by Boom! Comics that “The royalties do not transfer”.

Now whether or not the transfer of royalties is a potentially sticky business. It probably depends on the fine print of the writers’ contract, which can vary from author to author and publisher to publisher.

“Since Disney has refused to cooperate with the task force to identify affected perpetrators, the #DisneyMustPay joint task force needs help contacting everyone who may be affected. Members of the joint task need writers, readers and fans to alert authors who may be affected, ”the task force said in its announcement.

Disney has since said The Guardian that they were working with the authors to identify and correct discrepancies with the royalty statements.

“We are carefully reviewing whether any royalty payments may have been missed as a result of the integration of the acquisitions and will take appropriate corrective action if so,” a Disney spokesperson said.

[Source: The Guardian]

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Lisa M. Horner