Buck Rogers Rights In Question As Skydance Plans New Movie
Who controls the rights for the pulp sci-fi hero, Buck Rogers? A new story in The Hollywood Reporter has called Buck’s future into question, as Skydance revealed plans to make a new Buck Rogers movie. However, this new film has no relation to Legendary’s plans for a Buck Rogers TV series with producer and potential star, George Clooney. In fact, Skydance claims that Legendary doesn’t have the rights to make any Buck Rogers project at all.
Skydance is working with the estate of Philip Francis Nowlan, the author who created Anthony Rogers in 1929. That particular story, Armageddon 2419 A.D, fell into the public domain. Regardless, the Nowlan estate contends that it still has the rights to the Buck Rogers comic book stories that followed. THR also notes that the estate’s lawyer “warned Legendary that moving forward with a Buck Rogers project would constitute ‘slander of title of the rights.'”
Legendary responded to that claim in a statement to THR.
“We have secured the rights we need to proceed with our project and the company will not comment any further on these baseless claims. This same party has been claiming for years that they have rights which they do not have and have been trying to inhibit projects based on rights they do not legally control.”
As noted in the original report, Legendary’s Buck Rogers TV series is much further along than Skydance’s competing project. Brian K. Vaughan, the creator of Y: The Last Man, is already attached to write the Buck Rogers show.
It may take a court case to determine which side actually has control of Buck Rogers. If so, that could potentially put both projects in limbo.
What do you think about the latest Buck Rogers developments? Let us know in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: Buck Rogers in the 25th Century Volume 1: Grievous Angels
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