Saturday, May 10, 2014

Guilty Until Proven Innocent

This blog will break down three legal issues that occurred in the film industry. The film industry can be really tricky when it comes to legal issues. That’s why it’s very important to copyright everything and make sure lawyers are involved. The first legal issue I will be discussing will be the lawsuit against actress, Elizabeth Banks and her husband producer, Max Handelman.

According to the Hollywood News website, Banks and Handel were being sued by Producer Dan Rosen for their recent film, Walk of Shame. Rosen felt that the couple’s new film is very similar to a film he pitched to them a few years earlier. Rosen had intentions for Banks to play the lead role in the film. After leaving the meeting very confident that they wanted to possibly consider the film, he awaited to hear back from them. He later learns of this new film they are producing that is very identical to the one he pitched to them years earlier. Cases like this can be very tricky. That’s why it would have been wise to have a lawyer or a manager also present in a meeting like this. The minutes of the meeting should have also been noted. The more notes and documents filed or signed, the better the chances for a successful case.

The next case I am going to discuss is the lawsuit Gregg Allman is brewing up against film producers of the film, Midnight Rider. This was the film that had the recent death of the camera assistant, who was hit by a freight train during one of the shooting days. According to Adams article on the WMAZ TV-13’s website, Allman doesn’t wan t the film made, due to the tragic circumstances. The producers however, want to complete the film. According to the online article, Allman states that the producers lost their rights to the film when principal photography didn’t start on time. A case like this is very sad. It was sad that someone had to loose their life during the production of this film.  I understand Allman’s case, but so that the life that was taken won’t be forgotten, I think the film should be still completed in remembrance of the lost one.

My third and last case is against a well-known talented director, Martin Scorsese. Producer Ceccho Gori was suing Scorsese in 2012, for not producing and directing a film called Silence. According to the Deadline Hollywood website, Scorsese had agreed to working on the film in 1990. However, due to other commitments the production was postponed. Later it comes out that Scorsese is working on another film, The Wolf of Wall Street. This didn’t sit right with Gori. A situation like this can‘t be taken serious unless there is a document signed. I don’t know if this agreement was done by a meeting or by Scorsese saying he agrees to do the film. Unless there is a contract, Gori will not have much of an argument.