Stan Lee has dropped a $1 billion lawsuit against POW! Entertainment, in which the Marvel icon claimed he had been duped into signing away the exclusive right to his name.
The move comes as turmoil continues in Lee’s personal life. The lawsuit was filed in May, when the 95-year-old Lee was allegedly under the sway of memorabilia collector Keya Morgan. Morgan is now barred from contacting Lee or coming within 100 yards of him, under a restraining order granted on Friday.
A joint statement was issued Monday by Lee and by POW! Entertainment, now owned by Hong Kong’s Camsing International, announcing that the suit had been dismissed.
“The whole thing has been confusing to everyone, including myself and the fans, but I am now happy to be surrounded by those who want the best for me,” Lee said in the release. “I am thrilled to put the lawsuit behind me, get back to business with my friends and colleagues at POW! and launch the next wave of amazing characters and stories!”
In the statement, POW! said it had been working behind the scenes to resolve the dispute out of concern for Lee’s wellbeing.
“We are ecstatic that this ill-founded lawsuit has been dismissed and we look forward to working with Stan again to develop and produce the great projects that were put on hold when the lawsuit was filed,” POW! CEO Shane Duffy said in the statement. “We recently got together with Stan to discuss our path forward and we and Camsing are pleased with his overwhelmingly enthusiastic reaction.”
Lee sold POW! to Camsing in 2017. The suit alleged that Lee had signed over the company without fully reading or understanding the documents, owing in part to his macular degeneration.
On Friday, attorneys representing Lee obtained a restraining order against Morgan, pending a hearing on July 26. The application alleged that Morgan had taken advantage of his closeness to Lee to embezzle assets worth at least $5 million. Morgan has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.
The situation appears to have come to a head in early June, when Morgan allegedly moved Lee out of his house and into an apartment. The restraining order alleges that Morgan was trying to isolate Lee from his financial advisors and relatives in order to assert control over Lee’s affairs. Morgan and Lee have not been in contact for several weeks, and Morgan is reportedly out of state.