This is definitely more ammo for the we-should-boycott-Marvel crowd. And all of Marvel's entreaties against piracy sound a bit more hollow after this.
Blog@Newsarama -- Marvel Demands $17K From Ghost Rider Co-Creator
The final judgement has been handed down in the long running Gary Friedrich vs Marvel (Ghost Rider) case, and now we know the full amount that Friedrich owes Marvel. That’s right, Marvel, a company that stands to make millions of dollars from the upcoming Ghost Rider II movie, and is paying Nicholas Cage millions to portray a character that Friedrich created, now wants money from Friedrich – in specific $17,000.
Essentially, Disney/Marvel counter-sued Friedrich over ownership of Ghost Rider, demanding all moneys he had made from selling prints of the character at conventions and the like, and won, so now Friedrich – who, by his own accounts, is unemployed and has no assets – finds himself owing the corporation that he believes stole his creation $17,000 with no way of paying. It’s one thing for Marvel to reassert itself legally as the owner of the character, but demanding $17,000 from someone who’s essentially penniless? That just seems cruel, and maybe worse for Marvel, something that can only lead to bad publicity for the company (and at a time when its treatment of Jack Kirby and the Kirby estate is getting some mainstream media attention, too). The sooner the decision is made to waive the “debt,” the better.