If you’ve been paying attention to the Superman drama over the last several years, the whole thing looks to be over. A judge has sided with Warner Brothers/DC in their battle against the heirs of Jerry Siegel, and DC will be able to keep Superman in their roster of characters and Warner can continue to make Superman movies. This also means that Warner has no fears of losing the character or having to pay out a huge licensing fee and can move forward with a Justice League movie for 2015.
Basically what happened, according to Variety, is that the judge cited a 1992 agreement that the heirs of Shuster entered into with Warner in that they’ll receive $25,000 a year for life in an attempt to cover Shuster’s debt. That deal was meant to cover all future claims against the character and as the deal was made after the 1976 copyright law revision that was the entire basis for the heir’s lawsuit, the judge held it up and the Siegels cannot reclaim the rights to the character.
Obviously, the behavior of the lawyer may have played into it as recent findings illustrated that the whole thing may have been a scheme on his part where he took advantage of the Siegel heirs in an attempt to gain the rights for Superman all to himself.
I wish this is the last we’ll hear of this, but sadly there will be an appeal.