Originally reported by The Hollywood Reporter
The studio was developing the adaptation of the violent and edgy comic book from writer Garth Ennis and artist Darick Robertson but has put the project into turnaround.
The book follows the adventures of a CIA squad, known informally as “the boys,” whose job is to keep watch on the proliferation of superheroes and, if necessary, intimidate or eliminate them. Writing duo Matt Manfredi and Phil Hay, as well as Seth Rogen, had worked on the screenplay since the project was first set up in 2009.
Producers Neal H. Moritz of Original Film and Kickstart’s Jason Netter will now shop the project around town.
The Associated Press reportsthat on Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest ruled Friedrich gave up ownership to the property when he endorsed checks that contained language relinquishing rights to Marvel’s predecessors. The judge said the writer signed over all claims to the character in 1971 and again in 1978 in exchange for the possibility of more freelance work for the publisher.
“Either of those contractual transfers would be sufficient to resolve the question of ownership,” Forrest wrote. “Together, they provide redundancy to the answer that leaves no doubt as to its correctness.”
“The law is clear that when an individual endorses a check subject to a condition, he accepts that condition,” the judge ruled, contending her finding made it unnecessary “travel down the rabbit hole” to determine whether Ghost Rider was work for hire.