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Disney hasn't paid royalties to Star Wars author Alan Dean Foster

VulcanRaven

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Star Wars Author Pens Open Letter To Disney Over Unpaid Royalties

When Disney bought Lucasfilm in 2012, they didn’t just win the right to produce new entries in the Star Wars saga. They also inherited obligations to the many creators associated with the Star Wars brand, including authors who have fleshed out the universe in novels and other assorted tie-in merchandise. In other words, the studio must keep paying these writers for their contributions. But according to Alan Dean Foster, that isn’t happening. In a new open letter found on the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America website, Foster claims that Disney hasn’t been paying him royalties for his Star Wars books.

Foster has been with the Star Wars franchise since the very beginning. In 1977, he ghostwrote the original film’s novelization, while the cover gave George Lucas sole credit. That same year, Foster wrote Splinter of the Mind’s Eye, another Star Wars novel that served as a sequel to the first movie and helped launch the Expanded Universe. Aside from his Star Wars work, Foster also penned the novelizations for the first three Alien installments. These films also fall under Disney’s purview following the studio’s acquisition of 20th Century Fox last year. Foster insists that all of these books continue to make money. However, Foster says that he hasn’t made a dime from them since Disney took over.

SFWA president Mary Robinette Kowal noted that Foster initially aired his grievances with her organization last year. Regardless, the author’s dispute with Disney still hasn’t been settled. Foster detailed some of his interactions with the studio’s legal team in his letter:

“You want me to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) before even talking,” wrote Foster. “I’ve signed a lot of NDAs in my 50-year career. Never once did anyone ever ask me to sign one prior to negotiations. For the obvious reason that once you sign, you can no longer talk about the matter at hand. Every one of my representatives in this matter, with many, many decades of experience in such business, echo my bewilderment.”

“You continue to ignore requests from my agents,” added Foster. “You continue to ignore queries from SFWA, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America [and] you continue to ignore my legal representatives. I know this is what gargantuan corporations often do. Ignore requests and inquiries hoping the petitioner will simply go away. Or possibly die. But I’m still here, and I am still entitled to what you owe me. Including not to be ignored, just because I’m only one lone writer. How many other writers and artists out there are you similarly ignoring?”

Additionally, Foster shared that he was diagnosed with “an advanced form of cancer” in 2016 and that royalty payments would help finance his treatments as well as those for his wife, who also suffers from “serious medical issues.” In response to his letter’s publication, #DisneyMustPay has begun trending on social media. Foster has already attracted support from a few prominent members of the literary community, including former SFWA president John Scalzi and sci-fi author N.K. Jemisin.


It looks like Disney hasn't paid royalties to old writers after they bought Lucasfilm. Foster was diagnosed with a cancer in 2016 so he could really use the money.
 
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Happosai

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It looks like Disney hasn't paid royalties to old writers after they bought Lucasfilm. Foster was diagnosed with a cancer in 2016 so he could really use the money.
Allen Dean Foster also wrote all the novelizations of the Alien movies (until Alien3). Those are now owned by Disney...so I imagine they're not paying royalties on those either.
 

buizel

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Splinter of the Minds Eye was the NEXT BIG STAR WARS THING if 'A New Hope' flopped at cinemas. Book came out like.. in the early 80's , and Disney havent been paying him for 40 years?

God damn even i own and have read this book. Poor guy ):

Why cant 'Star Wars Fans' (twitter tards) put as much effort into helping out someone, like when they use all their effort to take down gina carano or whoever the fuck for their political views.
 

YCoCg

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Why cant 'Star Wars Fans' (twitter tards) put as much effort into helping out someone, like when they use all their effort to take down gina carano or whoever the fuck for their political views.
...they have? #DisneyMustPay has been trending since yesterday.
 
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zombrex

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I read his book as a teenager before I had even seen the Star Wars movies
I thought it was great at the time and was compelled to finish it which was tough for someone who was only interested in non fiction.
Disney need to stopping being scum and just pay the man.
 
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ManaByte

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Splinter of the Minds Eye was the NEXT BIG STAR WARS THING if 'A New Hope' flopped at cinemas. Book came out like.. in the early 80's , and Disney havent been paying him for 40 years?

God damn even i own and have read this book. Poor guy ):

Why cant 'Star Wars Fans' (twitter tards) put as much effort into helping out someone, like when they use all their effort to take down gina carano or whoever the fuck for their political views.

Disney has only owned Star Wars for 8 years.
 

#Phonepunk#

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wow that is fucked up. dude was an OG.
Why cant 'Star Wars Fans' (twitter tards) put as much effort into helping out someone, like when they use all their effort to take down gina carano or whoever the fuck for their political views.
i mean this is about the company itself fucking over someone. has nothing to do with fans.

the company just needs to do their fucking job and honor the legal contract. fuck having this guy crowdsource for his cancer medicine from fans. get his employer to do that. they have enough money.
 
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NickFire

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All that virtue signalling that this company does for the alphabet "victimization" is all for naught.
It depresses me when I think about how many regular Americans accept as gospel the things said by entities who are ultimately owned / controlled by massive global corporations. The equivalent in the revolutionary era would have been getting all news from papers paid for by the crown and no where else.
 

GymWolf

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Wrote a "stern letter" to EA over the lootboxes (which I am sure they salivated themselves, before the backlash)?
Disney is our saviour
 
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Ballthyrm

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This has huge implication and i can see that going to the supreme court to redefine what copyrights protect.
Disney reasoning is clearly bullshit but i don't think the law is that clear on the subject.

Them waiting for him to die is just another proof they know they are in the wrong.
I hope Foster lives long enough to see them losing this fight.
 

GreyHorace

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I'm not really sure how much of Star Wars lore was created by Foster. Some people say he was the one who named the emperor Palpatine in the novelization of A New Hope. Others say he named the Empire's homeworld Coruscant. Or was that Timothy Zahn?. The Kaiburr Crystal which Jedi use for their lightsabers is definitely his creation as it appeared in his novel Splinter of the Mind's Eye.

Regardless, if he had a contract guaranteeing royalties from Lucasfilm then he should be fucking paid. Disney are being absolute dicks for not honoring the agreement.
 

Happosai

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I read his book as a teenager before I had even seen the Star Wars movies
I thought it was great at the time and was compelled to finish it which was tough for someone who was only interested in non fiction.
Disney need to stopping being scum and just pay the man.
Foster would get the rights from 20th-Century to read the original scripts for the films he would put into novelization. Before DVDs/Blu-ray with added deleted scenes; his books had all the info which directors would later remove in post-production editing on each film. Because of Foster, fans knew about many of the deleted and even unfilmed scenes from the Alien films because they were detailed in the novels based on the scripts. The Star Wars novel would be more of a confirmation of "Han shot first" due to the fact that the film was still in production when Foster was writing. As much as people want to debate that scene -- the book holds all the answers to what Lucas and his crew had in mind prior to full production.
 
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