HLP Business News

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HLP Business News

Postby Omphalos » Sun May 25, 2008 9:31 pm

I figured that this deserves a place for discussion. Here is the first thing I have found on this topic in a while. I just stumbled upon it this evening.

Simon & Schuster has paid two "good" six-figure sums for UK and Commonwealth rights in two new series by science fiction authors Brian Herbert and Kevin J Anderson.

The first series is a new trilogy in the long-running science fiction series Dune. The first volume in the series, Jessica of Dune, is scheduled for an autumn 2009 release in trade paperback. The other books in the series are Irulan of Dune and Leto of Dune for releases in 2011 and 2013 respectively.

The authors are also working on the first three volumes of another series, Hellhole. The first book in the series will be published in autumn 2010 and the next volumes in the series will be published on alternate years.

The rights were sold by Claire Roberts at Trident Media Group on behalf of John Silbersack and Robert Gottlieb to Simon & Schuster senior fiction editor Kate Lyall-Grant. The books will be published by Tor Books in the US. S&S publishes Anderson's Saga of the Seven Suns series.

"We are absolutely delighted to be continuing to publish Kevin J. Anderson, a master storyteller who is considered one of the best in his field," said Lyall-Grant. "We are also thrilled to be welcoming Brian Herbert to S&S in this exciting new joint venture." Brian Herbert is the eldest son of Dune author Frank Herbert.


Sorce

I figure that "good six-figure" probably means up to $750K, and keep in mind that is only for the Commonwealth Nations. So assume $1.2 to $1.5 M for the seven books that are the subject of this article, and probably double that for the US rights. Doesnt it just make you want to cry? Or, are you more likely to cry when you read that the Smellhole books are only the "first three" of that series?
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Postby Omphalos » Sun May 25, 2008 9:40 pm

Here is the article announcing the Dune movie:

Berg to direct 'Dune' for Paramount
Misher producing adaptation of sci-fi novel
By TATIANA SIEGEL

Peter Berg
Berg

'Dune'

Kevin Misher
Misher
Peter Berg is attached to direct a bigscreen adaptation of Frank Herbert's classic sci-fi novel "Dune" for Paramount Pictures.

Kevin Misher, who spent the past year obtaining the book rights from the Herbert estate, will produce via his Par-based shingle.

Herbert's 1965 novel is a sweeping, futuristic tale set on the remote desert planet Arrakis, which produces the interstellar empire's sole source of the spice Melange -- used for distant space travel. An empirewide power struggle ensues over the control of the spice. Berg would be the latest helmer to take a crack at the property, which spawned a 1984 David Lynch film as well as a 2000 Sci Fi Channel miniseries starring William Hurt.

New Amsterdam's Richard Rubenstein, who produced Sci Fi's "Dune" and sequel "Children of Dune," is also producing alongside Sarah Aubrey of Film 44, Berg's production banner. John Harrison and Mike Messina exec produce.

The project is out to writers, with the producers looking for a faithful adaptation of the Hugo- and Nebula Award-winning book. The filmmakers consider its theme of finite ecological resources particularly timely.

Paramount envisions the project as a tentpole film.

Berg and Misher enjoy strong ties dating back to Misher's executive days at Universal Pictures. Misher also produced Berg's second directorial outing, "The Rundown."

Actor-turned-helmer Berg most recently directed the upcoming Will Smith starrer "Hancock." His directing credits include "The Kingdom" and "Friday Night Lights."


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Postby SandChigger » Sun May 25, 2008 11:31 pm

Hey, in that article on the game lawsuit, how did they get the information on HLP earnings? Is there some way of finding that online?
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Postby SandChigger » Sun May 25, 2008 11:39 pm

To answer your question above, tho...

Nah, them getting that much money doesn't make me want to cry, when I think that there are people who contribute even less but are paid far more. (Like all those men and women who knock little pieces of various stuff around fields and courts with their bodies or varied utensils. :roll: )

Just one more example of the absurdities of our modern world, where mediocrity reigns.
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Postby Pardot Kynes » Mon May 26, 2008 8:22 am

Athleticism used to be how people showed their martial skill, which was useful in combat- in defense of your nation.

Now, not so much- but they are still treated like heroes. It sickens me.



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Postby Omphalos » Mon May 26, 2008 9:46 am

SandChigger wrote:Hey, in that article on the game lawsuit, how did they get the information on HLP earnings? Is there some way of finding that online?


Put up a link or the article text and Ill tell you what I think. Ill bet it either came from a mouthy lawyer, or was entered as evidence in the suit where injury to financial position was alleged. If it was evidence, I'm happy to look to see if there is more. But it probably was not from any SEC filings, because partnerships are not obliged to provide revenue data.
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Postby Omphalos » Mon May 26, 2008 10:17 am

Here is a link with an early interview of the two where they begin the discussion on the problems with the game coming from the 1984 movie.
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Postby Omphalos » Mon May 26, 2008 10:24 am

OK, here is the article with the revenue statement.

It sounds to me like the HLP was fighting a motion, most probably to change venue from the federal court in WA to a federal court in CA. The HLP was arguing that the CA court would be more likely to give the defendants a break not only because they are CA "citizens" but because they contribute so much to the CA economy, and because they will be next to impossible to beat on their home turf because they are so giant and powerful down there. Its a fairly standard response to that kind of motion where a corporation is a litigant. The HLP appears to have pled revenue differences to make its point, but lost anyway (almost certainly because the CA federal court judges have much more experience with these types of cases).



Most readers probably know that the RTS genre did not begin with the orcs v. humans conflict (seem familiar?) of Blizzard's original Warcraft, ancestor of the MMORPG du jour, WoW. Instead, it probably began with a 1992 DOS/VGA game called Dune II, based on Frank Herbert's Dune. (Just for kicks, see Justin Hall's review.) Imho, there are a limited set of really popular, extremely detailed virtual worlds to choose from, and Arrakis is probably third in the sci-fi realm behind the two Star Thingees. And, to put my neck out, Dune's literary roots make it a more interesting world than the Lucasfilm and Paramount front-runners. Interesting to wonder, then, if we might need to wait awhile for an MMORPG where the spice flows, based on the litigation battle in Herbert Limited Partnership v. Electronic Arts Inc., et al.

The plaintiff is HLP, which owns the IP rights for Herbert's novels, and the defendants are EA, Sony, Random House, Wal-Mart, Best Buy, etc., who have all created, sold, or printed materials involving the Dune universe for two Dune II-sequel games for the PS1 and PC: Dune 2000 and Emporer: Battle for Dune. It seems HLP is claiming a standard array of trademark, copyright, and unfair competition claims based upon the allegation that the EA Dune games (and the strategy guides for those games) exceeded the scope of the IP rights granted by certain licenses. This opinion isn't too interesting on the IP front, it's simply a grant of a motion to transfer venue from New York to California, or as, the Honorable Victor Marrero put it "Defendants now ask this Court, borrowing from the advanced techniques of the works at issue, to function as a space-folding navigator and transport this case to the Northern District of California." (SDNY = the Spacing Guild -- that pwnz.) But it is interesting to get a glimpse at the legal partitioning of the IP rights to Paul Muadib's adopted homeworld.

Also interesting are the relative financial means of HLP vs. the defendants they're suing: "HLP's average annual revenues for each of the past ten years have been under $ 750,000. Each Defendant's annual revenue for 2003 exceeded $ 1 billion." As the Judge Marrerro notes, "the smallest Defendant's annual revenue appears to have exceeded HLP's annual revenue by a factor of more than one thousand in 2003." But while HLP garnered the court's sympathy on that count, the case has nevertheless been transferred off to California, home of EA.

Posted by greg on July 14, 2004 | Permalink
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Postby SandChigger » Mon May 26, 2008 11:27 am

That's the reference I was talking about.

(Would have said so earlier, but conked out after dinner again. ... I seem to be on jet lagged time for some reason...without having had the fun of travelling. :shock: )

When I was nosing around last week I found a bit more info than I did the last time: identification number with the WA revenue bureau, street address, official agent, etc. Nothing juicy, though. Couldn't find any info on a registration in CA, though, so it's probably safe to say they're still Washington-based, right?
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Postby Omphalos » Mon May 26, 2008 12:52 pm

For sure. This form of ownership is a hybrid of corporation and partnership that leans much more closely towards partnership. The "limited" says that they are limiting their liability, but otherwise its owned by the partners, who are not really shareholders. They probably have to register only with the WA secretary of state, and not every state that they do business in.
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Postby Omphalos » Mon May 26, 2008 12:54 pm

Here is a link to the publicly available information about the former corporately held HLP. This is out of date, as they are now an LLP. This link will take you to the Washington Office of the Secretary of State.
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Postby Liege-Killer » Mon May 26, 2008 2:47 pm

"We are absolutely delighted to be continuing to publish Kevin J. Anderson, a master storyteller who is considered one of the best in his field," said Lyall-Grant.


I just wonder how drunk you have to be, or how high, or how much you have to be paid, to be able to say something like that with a straight face?
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Postby Omphalos » Mon May 26, 2008 3:00 pm

Liege-Killer wrote:
"We are absolutely delighted to be continuing to publish Kevin J. Anderson, a master storyteller who is considered one of the best in his field," said Lyall-Grant.


I just wonder how drunk you have to be, or how high, or how much you have to be paid, to be able to say something like that with a straight face?


Or how well paid? :wink:
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Postby Omphalos » Thu Aug 07, 2008 10:34 pm

I wonder how this lawsuit is going? These are some big-ass defendants who are involved in the suit.
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Postby SandChigger » Fri Aug 08, 2008 12:00 am

No new information out there, I take it?
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Postby Ampoliros » Wed Aug 20, 2008 2:42 pm

Liege-Killer wrote:
"We are absolutely delighted to be continuing to publish Kevin J. Anderson, a master storyteller who is considered one of the best in his field," said Lyall-Grant.


I just wonder how drunk you have to be, or how high, or how much you have to be paid, to be able to say something like that with a straight face?


By the Best in his field, they mean "He who can get a brick of paper published and sold to rabid fans who can't even read good." Basically they don't give a fuck what he writes as long as it sells. Seeing as how you can't return books in "read" status very easily they really don't care what he writes. Its basically sold on the DUNE name with nice cover art and the NEW! label.

Yeah HLP doesn't give a shit about Dune. They want the cash it rakes in. KJA likes to beat-off to how he can write utter trash and get called a "master storyteller". I'd hate to hear the stories he tells his kids. If he ever has kids. I hope he does, and his son/daughter grows up to be a great writer, and people ask them if their father inspired them. They'll say "Yeah, I had to repair all the damage that idiot did".



Wait, lawsuit? what'd i miss?
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Postby SandChigger » Wed Aug 20, 2008 4:19 pm

(He has a stepson, Rebecca's by her first husband, but no others that we know of. The son may be one of the guilty parties responsible for those hideous ani-gifs on the MySpace pages. No idea if he has aspirations of being a writer.)
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Re: HLP Business News

Postby Omphalos » Tue Apr 28, 2009 4:11 pm

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Re: HLP Business News

Postby SandChigger » Tue Apr 28, 2009 5:25 pm

That's someone Kevin PAYS to work with/represent him, right?

Some big names in his client list. Does his taking Kevin on mean he's fallen on hard times? Or is Kevin that hot a property?

:roll:
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Re: HLP Business News

Postby GamePlayer » Tue Apr 28, 2009 7:28 pm

It's money based. KJA unfortunately makes a lot of money for the HLP, so his agent is there to represent a "financially" successful client.
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Re: HLP Business News

Postby Omphalos » Tue Apr 28, 2009 8:37 pm

The publishing industry is largely a joke anyway, and KJA is the biggest guffaw in there.

Seriously, as our economy slips further and further back in size and people get more and more conservative with their money I keep hoping that all this crap and shit and dreck that permeates our lives will just go the fuck away and people will start using their money only to acquire things that are worthwhile.

Hopeless dream, I'm sure. Maybe I'm just looking for something decent to come out of all of this mess.
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Re: HLP Business News

Postby GamePlayer » Wed Apr 29, 2009 8:33 am

I don't think it's a hopeless dream, but we have to understand that the economy is cyclical. This drop may well trim much of the fat from the publishing industry (as is happening to so many industries) and people will be forced to make better choices. We can only hope "writers" like KJA are one of the victims. However, eventually the cycle will begin again and slowly but surely people will gravitate toward excess once more. Until the next downward turn hits.

While I loathe these economic times and hope for better days, the fact is adversity is great for creativity. We will likely reap the benefits of this in the long run.
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Re:

Postby Freakzilla » Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:53 am

Liege-Killer wrote:
"We are absolutely delighted to be continuing to publish Kevin J. Anderson, a master storyteller who is considered one of the best in his field," said Lyall-Grant.


I just wonder how drunk you have to be, or how high, or how much you have to be paid, to be able to say something like that with a straight face?


I couldn't get that high, I would pass out first.
They were destroyed because they lied pretentiously. Have no fear that my wrath
will fall upon you because of your innocent mistakes.

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Re: HLP Business News

Postby Ampoliros » Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:57 am

Omphalos wrote:The publishing industry is largely a joke anyway, and KJA is the biggest guffaw in there.

Seriously, as our economy slips further and further back in size and people get more and more conservative with their money I keep hoping that all this crap and shit and dreck that permeates our lives will just go the fuck away and people will start using their money only to acquire things that are worthwhile.

Hopeless dream, I'm sure. Maybe I'm just looking for something decent to come out of all of this mess.


I think this is the reason we are seeing the KJA(V)SF right now. KJA needs to put out some good early press to get his books to move faster or else he might be in danger of getting the axe on a lot of projects. I'm pretty sure the publishers know his books are utter crap, but they sell. If his sales start dropping (Paul) it's going to cut deep into his pockets. So now the OH presents a literal danger to him, rather than just the annoyance we were before.
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Re: HLP Business News

Postby SandChigger » Wed Apr 29, 2009 4:51 pm

Oh, you mean he might have to give up the castle in Colorado ... and the "Runaway from 'Becca" cabin in the mountains? :shock:

Aw, TOO bad. :cry:

:lol:
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Re: HLP Business News

Postby Ampoliros » Wed Apr 29, 2009 5:43 pm

I play it like i see it. So I imagine we'll start seeing some pre-reviews on Amazon soon.
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