Tuesday, June 24, 2008
News of Yore 1952: Don't Tread On Me
$1,000,000 Damage Suit
A $1,000,000 damage suit was filed in New York State Supreme Court this week against the National Broadcasting Co., the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., Young & Rubicam, Inc., Talent Associates, Ltd., Fred Coe and David Shaw by Jerry Siegel, who in 1935 originated the "Superman" comic strip but was unable to retain control of the feature.
Mr. Siegel's complaint charges that the plot of a television play called "The Lantern Copy" broadcast May 25 closely parallels his own career to a point, but portrays the cartoonist as "a person of immoral, vicious, disreputable and criminal character and nature." Defendants are the network, sponsor, advertising agency, script agency, producer and author, respectively.
Mr. Siegel's complaint, incidentally, states that TV rights to "Superman" have been sold "for a sum reported to be in the neighborhood of thirty million dollars." McClure Syndicate distributes the strip.
Labels: News of Yore
Except, he didn't sold the rights to the "Adventures Of Superman" series-DC have the rights to the series (And, still own it to this day).
The director was Delbert Mann (the director of Marty, another Goodyear Television Playhouse presentation which he remade himself as a movie), who left his papers to the Vanderbilt library in Nashville. I for one would love to see if a script survives.
Next time I am in LA I will have a look at the Museum of Broadcast to find more.
Title: The Lantern Copy
Date: 25 May 1952
Director: Delbert Mann
Producer: Fred Coe
Writer: David Shaw
Music: RCA Recordings
Distribution: NBC Philco-Goodyear Television Playhouse
Format: Live Television
Principal Actors: Paul Langton, Neva Patterson, Royal Beal
Supporting Actors: Georgianne Johnson, Mark Daniels
Contents: Memoirs, Scrapbook
Memoirs: Part I, pp. 91, 98D
Scrapbook: Volume I, 1949-1953
Location: Boxes 93, 102