ja said… (…)
Jim, I would love to know your insight on this possible real-world scenario: Disney might one day revoke Marvel’s policy on art returns, as they (significantly more than Warner Bros.) have been so vociferously protective of their properties & characters, that everyone who works on anything Mickey, simply are not allowed to keep the originals they produce.
Originals (storyboards, previsualization development work, prop designs, statues, etc.) are, by contract and policy, literally the property of Disney.
What happens when or if Disney puts a halt to this policy at Marvel, leading the way for Warner Bros. and everyone else? I believe this will send damaging ripples throughout the industry, greatly affecting business at conventions. Great or greater damage to a number of the artists themselves, who depend on that extra income to supplement their livelihoods, could be wrought.
That’s a bomb that I would hate to see go off in this industry. It’s one I can easily imagine happening, though. If or when that would happen, I suspect it would be only the beginning of the various kinds of policy changes by Those In Charge that could cripple the comics industry as a whole.
Those In Charge tend to do such things, wantonly.
Jim, do you think this would or could ever happen? Have you heard any talk from significantly higher-ups from any companies about such a thing?
It’s a butt-clenching, sphincter-tightening possibility that a lot of people would shudder to think about. September 15, 2011 8:06 PM
This changes the landscape considerably.
Disney will help Marvel with their marketing, merchandising and media muscle. Disney will not tolerate the anarchy, chaos, unprofessionalism, small talents with big egos, and rampant editorial ineptitude/wrongheadedness rife at Marvel (and most of the industry). They’ll fix all that and gain ironclad control over their new “brands.” Which brings us to your speculation re: sucking the life out of the comics. I fear that in the course of fixing the various problems listed above they will go too far and suppress useful things — reasonable freedom, spontaneity, innovation, experimentation, groovy outrageousness and all the crazy-but-good stuff.
I still think so. I do not think it unlikely that in the course of protecting their properties that they might, as you suggest, eliminate the return of artwork and take other steps.
Brett Breeding said…(…)
Also Jim, I was under the notion that at some point it was determined through some fashion (Internally? Legally?) that all the physical original artwork was now considered to be copyright of the individual creators, not a gift but in fact property of the artists, and the companies retain all copyright as to the content and characters. An artist can’t publish his original art, but they can include photographs of the pages in certain types of published works, or catalogs. Are you aware of any of this or am I just misinformed? September 17, 2011 12:06 PM
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