KIRBY ESTATE Marvel Copyright Appeal Denied Again
Another appeal filed by the heirs of Jack Kirby to challenge the ruling that Marvel and Disney own copyrights to the works Jack Kirby created for the company has been denied.
The New York City federal Court of Appeals denied the latest petition for a rehearing of the judgement that the heirs have no right to issue copyright termination notices to Marvel Comics. The entire appeal judgement reads, simply:
"Appellants Lisa R. Kirby, Neal L. Kirby, Susan N. Kirby, and Barbara J. Kirby, filed petition for panel rehearing, or, in the alternative, for rehearing en banc. The panel that determined the appeal has considered the request for panel rehearing, and the active members of the Court have considered the request for rehearing en banc.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the petition is denied."
This was essentially a last-ditch effort, an appeal of an appeal of a judgement. The initial termination notices sent by Kirby's estate in 2009 have now been found to be sent without any rights to termination, a decision held up in appeal in August and reaffirmed by this denial today.
Jack Kirby co-created much of the Marvel Universe with writer/editor Stan Lee, including but not limited to the Fantastic Four, the X-Men, the Avengers, and others, all of whom have hundred million to billion dollar film franchises. In April of this year, a similar judgement was passed down in favor of Warner Bros against the heirs of Jerry Siegel in a battle for rights to Superman and Superboy.