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September 25, 2012

Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore Issue Joint PR Declaring Settlement In Walking Dead-Related Litigation

imageIt's about what it sounds like in that headline: the Walking Dead-related lawsuits were apparently settled to the satisfaction of the parties involved. This includes an agreed-upon, mutual press silence on any details of that outcome. In case you missed it, the artist Tony Moore had claimed to be left out of Walking Dead-related revenues due him, and that the mechanism for this was when he assigned rights to Kirkman in order, according to the line of thinking as related to the public after the suit was filed, to facilitate Kirkman finding exactly the kind of television deal the property has since enjoyed.

I did sort of a crappy job covering this story, I think (I hope) because I saw it ending up here -- "here" being a settlement that potentially attenuates any of the more extravagant claims made during the back and forth that followed the filing. We don't really know the merits of either creator's case; well, I don't. It's such a casually litigious society now it's hard to sort out what's posturing and what's substantive, and I think there's a trap in following the more heated claims as if those are automatically a window into the case itself. We do know that the outcome here was apparently amenable to both creators, but there are all sorts of ways the outcome could be desirable above and beyond the merits of specific claims made by Moore and/or Kirkman. At the same time, it could be that this was straight-up Moore being screwed and this settlement is him getting back some of his. The cat in that box is either alive or it's a zombie or a little bit of both; a settlement like this keeps it suspended in that state of being both things, maybe forever.

I would imagine that this is a significant call to attention on the media-rights aspects of projects like these, which is surprising only in that you'd think that this stuff might be airtight by now.
posted 7:00 am PST | Permalink

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