Roughly six months after suing former collaborator (and childhood friend) Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore is now approaching a federal court in hopes of legally declaring himself a co-author of “The Walking Dead”, a comic book series that has blossomed into a wildly successful franchise since its 2003 debut. In addition to “The Walking Dead” co-authorship, Moore is also looking to be compensated for several other comic-book properties that he worked on with Kirkman, including “Battle Pope,” “Brit” and two other potential comic book series titled “Dead Planet” and “My Name Is Abraham.”Tony Moore was partnered with Robert Kirkman as the creative team behind “The Walking Dead” when it first launched in 2003, illustrating the first six issues of the black-and-white horror series. When he filed his lawsuit back in February, Moore had claimed that Kirkman fraudulently convinced him to sign away his copyright interests for “The Walking Dead”, “Brit” and “Battle Pope”, which allowed Kirkman to move forward on The Walking Dead television series without having to give up royalties for the future project. Stated in the lawsuit filed by Moore, the illustrator claims that he “has not received the proper amount of royalties owed to him,” up to this point. As it stands now, Moore receives 60% of “comic publishing net proceeds”, 20% of “motion picture net proceeds” for both “The Walking Dead” and “Brit” and 50% of the “motion picture net proceeds” from “Battle Pope.” Kirkman claims that Moore only has the rights to claim ownership as an artist (ie, “penciler, inker and gray tones”).
With the illustrator’s latest legal move against Robert Kirkman, Moore claims that “Kirkman is a proud liar and fraudster who freely admits that he has no qualms about misrepresenting material facts in order to consummate business transactions, and it is precisely that illicit conduct which led to the present lawsuit (and to Kirkman’s business ‘success’ generally).” The new federal court filing even claims that Moore had his co-copyright credits from the original proof drawing removed from the pages prior to the release of the first issue and that he wasn’t made aware of the omission until 2005.
Moore is currently requesting that a jury trial should be responsible for deciding his case, one that fans and industry folks will be paying close attention to for sure. You can view his filed complaints below.