Entertainment for fraud and conversion, claiming the company and two of its officers conspired to steal his identity, name and likeness in a "nefarious scheme" involving a "sham" sale to a Chinese company.
The company was sold in 2017 to Hong Kong-based Camsing International Holding, 16 years after Lee co-founded it. Shane Duffy and co-founder Gill Champion didn't disclose the details of the deal. The suit contends that they took advantage of Lee, who was despondent at the time over the death of his wife Joan and was suffering from macular degeneration. Stan Lee has filed suit in California against POW! Instead, what he purportedly signed was a "fraudulent" intellectual property assignment agreement that granted POW! Entertainment, whom he claims took advantage of his name without his permission, according to a complaint filed in Los Angeles and obtained by PEOPLE.
"Lee does not recall anyone reading the Illegitimate Document to him, and, due to his advanced macular degeneration, he could not have read it himself". The 95-year-old Lee said in the lawsuit that he was made to believe he was signing another contract, but because of his poor eyesight, he signed the document handing over his naming rights.
Lee, it is argued, would not have knowingly signed a document providing the exclusive right to use his identity. His lawyers want the court to void the license agreement and impose "damages in excess of one billion dollars".
Lee created or co-created some of Marvel's most recognizable characters, like Spider-Man, Iron Man, Hulk, and The Avengers, in the 1960s.
When Stan Lee goes to court, he doesn't mess around!
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He says that they either tricked him into signing over the exclusive rights to his name, image and likeness or flat-out forged his signature.
But in April, Olivarez denied to The Hollywood Reporter that he had misappropriated Lee's funds.
"I appreciate everything you say and do". You guys are my true superheros.
The prolific comic book creator is embroiled in a number of legal battles, this just being the latest in a tangle of issues that wouldn't be out of place in one of his own celebrated stories.
There were more negative headlines when it emerged last month that Lee was being sued by massage therapist Maria Carballo for sexual assault and battery.