BOOM! Studios push Disney to pay royalties to creators
The fight for royalties from the mega-studio Disney has won a new ally. BOOM! Studios joined the Disney task force must payefforts to restore royalties to authors and creatives behind huge franchises. While BOOM! have made a name for themselves with independent titles like Loggers, they also release licensed titles like Buffy the vampire slayer, which was previously owned by Fox and now owned by Disney since the two studios merged.
“Boom Studios strongly supports all creators who receive reports and royalty payments that are contractually owed to them. When we have obligations, we honor them, ”said Filip Sablik, President of Publishing and Marketing, Boom. “We are pleased to be working with the Disney task force and our Disney licensor to resolve the situation to everyone’s satisfaction,” adding that the task force “believes that Boom Studios has not been notified of writers who were due. royalties when Disney transferred the media rights. to them. “
But who is the task force and why are they fighting? The #Disney Must Pay Joint Task Force was formed to help authors “who may be owed money due to the removal of royalties and declarations for creative media-related works.” The group includes Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), who have raised awareness of the issue with the hashtag #DisneyMustPay.
The band made headlines last year with Star wars novelist Alan Dean Foster. Foster wrote the original romanization of Star Wars: A New Hope and wrote countless Star wars romanizations since. And while his original contract with Lucasfilm included a 0.5% royalty on sales, Foster has not received any royalties since Disney bought Fox. These royalties, which amount to a few thousand dollars, are small potatoes for a multi-billion dollar company like Disney. So why isn’t Disney paying these writers?
In one open letter to disney“Foster wrote:” All of these books are still very printed. They are still making money. For you. When one company buys another, it acquires its liabilities as well as its assets. You are definitely reaping the benefits of assets. I would love my tiny share (although it’s not small for me).
SFWA President Mary Robinette Kowal issued a statement in support of Foster and other novelists, writing “The larger problem has the potential to affect all writers.” Disney’s argument is that they bought the rights but not the obligations of the contract. In other words, they believe they have the right to publish works, but are not obligated to pay the writer, no matter what the contract says. If we leave that position, it could set a precedent to fundamentally change the way copyright and contracts work in the United States. All a publisher would have to do to break a contract would be to sell it to a sister company. “
In response to BOOM! The studios announcement, Kowal said: “Boom Studios is not at fault here, and the #DisneyMustPay Joint Working Group is grateful for taking the lead with their cooperation,… With their help we are able to speed up the process of locating writers who may have been affected by the transfer of rights by Disney. I would have liked Disney himself to be willing to work with us as well.
(Going through io9, image: BOOM! Studios)
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