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Studios battle over the rights to The Crow

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Caffeinated Clint
@http://www.twitter.com/clintmoviehole

Clint is the creator, editor and maintainer of Moviehole.


”A building gets torched, all that is left is ashes. I used to think that was true about everything, families, friends, feelings. But now I know, that sometimes if love proves real, two people who are meant to be together, nothing can keep them apart.”

… well, maybe one thing Sarah : Bob and Harvey.

Big news from the world of entertainment – and, er, ‘Court Weekly’ – with The Weinstein Company suing Relativity Media over distribution rights to the upcoming remake of “The Crow”.

The Weinstein’s say they had the right to release the film, which will be directed by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo with Bradley Cooper in talks to play Eric Draven, but Relativity’s Ryan Kavanaugh purposely overlooked that stipulation in their original agreement.

The Hollywood Reporter got their hands on the letter that Relativity sent back to the Weinstein’s, responding to their claim :

Dear Mr. Fields:

As we have informed you, the project for which you are demanding representations from Relativity is not even in production. Relativity has no obligation whatsoever to produce or distribute The Crow, and certainly has no obligation to assure TWC of anything. Relativity will waste no further time engaging in a hypothetical dialogue with you about a potential dispute that may or may not arise in the future.

In addition to being premature, your letter smacks of delusion as it ignores TWCs multiple breaches of the parties March 25, 2009 agreement (Termination Agreement). TWC openly and undisputedly failed to meet its financial obligations relating to Nine and failed to meet the contractual minimum marketing spend and contractual minimum screens for that film. As TWC is well aware, its wrongful conduct led to serious financial and other damage to Relativity. On top of such breaches, your client has failed to make payments due to Relativity and to provide the required accounting statements. It takes gall for your client to make demands upon Relativity about The Crow, which has not even been greenlit, when TWCs failure to properly distribute Nine demonstrated that it will disregard and breach any and all of its distribution, marketing and financial obligations. If any party is entitled to seek legal remedies it is Relativity.

Further, your continued bluster about filing a lawsuit in an effort to force Relativity to distribute a nonexistent film through TWC is not only absurd, it is a blatant threat to breach the dispute resolution provision of the Termination Agreement. The Termination Agreement does not permit claims for injunctive relief to be brought in court. To the contrary, the Termination Agreement provides that [a]ny and all controversies, claims or disputes arising out of or relating to this Agreement shall be resolved exclusively in one or more confidential arbitration proceedings in accordance with the procedures set forth in the NDA. (§ 15 (emphasis added).) The arbitration procedures in the NDA are found at Section 5.2, which sets forth the arbitration forum, rules, and appeal process. Your erroneous claim that TWC can bring a lawsuit arising out of the Termination Agreement is presumably based upon a misapplication of Section 5.1 of the NDA, which permits claims for injunctive relief arising out of an alleged breach of [the NDA] to be brought in court. As you know, the NDA has been terminated and TWC does not and cannot claim that Relativity is breaching or will breach the NDA. There is no good faith reading of these agreements which would permit TWC to file a lawsuit in court for a dispute arising under the Termination Agreement. As such, any claim brought by TWC in court will immediately be met with a motion for dismissal and sanctions. Your client is forewarned and proceeds at its own peril.

Nothing in this letter is intended to waive any rights or claims Relativity may have against TWC, and Relativity expressly reserves all such rights and claims.

Regards,
Carol Genis

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Clint is the creator, editor and maintainer of Moviehole.

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Against the Current - the band, not adventures in dangerous swimming 101
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Star Wars trilogy - no, the other one, fella!
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Cameron Crowe movies - Say Anything..., Jerry Maguire, Almost Famous
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