Variety is reporting that the House of Ideas is suing the House of the Mouse in the latest lawsuit brought by Marvel in order to maximize the return on its intellectual property. Marvel's latest legal foray is aimed at the ABC Family Channel, which the Walt Disney Company acquired from Fox for an eye-popping $5.2 billion in 2001. Back in 1992 Marvel entered into a deal with Fox to produce animated programming for the then Fox Family Channel including a Spider-Man cartoon series, which is at the center of the current dispute. In its lawsuit Marvel claims that Disney has failed to account properly for revenues from the Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk and X-Men animated series. Marvel's complaint alleges that Disney says it has lost money on the three cartoon series, but according to Marvel, the Mouse House refuses to provide Marvel with a proper accounting of the revenue earned by the animated series.
Marvel also claims that Disney has neglected Marvel's properties and instead concentrated its marketing efforts on series from Disney's various toon channels. Marvel is especially upset that Disney won't provide an accounting of the Spider-Man DVDs and videos that the Mouse House guerilla marketed in conjunction with the release of the original Spider-Man film in 2002 (Disney also released a box set of DVDs featuring the 1967 Spider-Man cartoons this year just as Spider-Man 2 opened).