Spider-Man Lives to Web-Sling (and Sing) Another Day Following Settlement of Copyright Suit

SpideyAfter infamously departing (i.e., being fired) from the nascent production of the Broadway musical Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, acclaimed stage and screen director Julie Taymor filed suit against the show’s producers.  As discussed previously on this blog, Taymor brought claims for breach of contract as well as copyright infringement.  The stakes were high.  Had Taymor succeeded in her suit, she might have been in a position to bar further productions and adaptations of the show, which has gained in popularity and profitability despite being riddled with problems and injuries during early preview performances.  Since the suit was filed, the parties have reportedly been on the verge of settlement on more than one occasion, but to no avail.  It seems that a deal has finally been struck. 

A little more than a month before trial was scheduled to begin, the presiding court granted a stipulated dismissal with prejudice, ending the lawsuit and signaling that the parties have all settled.  As is to be expected, the terms of the settlement have not been made public.  Nonetheless, the scant information available indicates that the compromise was good for all concerned.  Unnamed sources close to Taymor imply that she is assured a significant payday if the musical proves to be lucrative in the long term.  While the producers have been mostly silent in regard to the settlement, they are now almost certainly free to adapt the show for tours and alternative venues, such as Las Vegas, as they have announced that they are “looking forward to spreading Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark in new and exciting ways around the world.”  Given the Broadway production’s rumored $75 million price tag, the largest in the history of the Great White Way, future productions will be critical to the show’s profitability.   

Now that your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man’s legal troubles are a thing of the past, he may be swinging into your neighborhood for a limited engagement sometime soon.

Image courtesy of marvelousRoland.


DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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