Cowboys & Aliens Writing Credit Dispute
November 15, 2010

Cowboys & Aliens is Universal’s bid for a big summer blockbuster. It will be in theaters July 29, 2011, but the press has already started, with a release sent out announcing the poster and a trailer debuting on Wednesday. They’ve got some big names in the cast — Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, Olivia Wilde — an easily graspable high concept, and the ability to say “from the director of Iron Man“, Jon Favreau. It’s all “based on Platinum Studios’ graphic novel created by Scott Mitchell Rosenberg.”

Cowboys & Aliens starring Daniel Craig

Which is causing some dispute. Comic readers may remember Platinum Studios as a company better at getting hype than publishing comics and with a history of shady dealings. I best remember this particular publication, the Cowboys & Aliens comic, as something that faked its way to the top of a bestseller list by the company paying retailers to take their comic.

Now, those writing credits have gotten some negative attention.

Eight writers and writing teams have worked on Cowboys for several studios dating to 1997. … That [based on line] isn’t sitting well with writers who toiled on the screenplay years before Rosenberg’s comic — based on the film concept — came out in 2006.

The actual comic credits say that it’s written by Andrew Foley and Fred Van Lente with artwork by Luciano Lima, but it appears from the webcomic treatment that the comic was never that important to the company anyway.

5 Responses  
William George writes:  

It’s not like there wasn’t a million people screaming loudly “Don’t work for this scumbag!” at the time…

Jim Kosmicki writes:  

I find it to be a bit karmic that once he’s working in an area where there’s a strong trade union, the way that he’s treated creators in the past is biting him in the butt.

I also remember that I really didn’t care much for the graphic novel, but if I didn’t have that experience, the actors and director involved would have me interested in this movie. Then again, League of Extraordinary Gentleman looked to be a great movie on paper too…

Johanna writes:  

I don’t know, it all sounds a little generic to me. It’s a neat idea — cowboys fight aliens — but one maybe better suited to a kid playing with action figures instead of a full-length movie.

Cowboys & Aliens Isn’t a Comedy, Although It Looks Funny » DVDs Worth Watching writes:  

[…] Cowboys & Aliens, Universal’s intended blockbuster for next summer based on a troubled comic book, has run into yet another problem […]

Renaissance, New Series by Van Lente and Oleksyk, Looks Amazing » Comics Worth Reading writes:  

[…] Lente (writer of Comic Book Comics, Action Philosophers, and the comic that a little movie called Cowboys & Aliens is based on) and Sarah Oleksyk (Ivy) are teaming up for a new comic, […]


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