New Line Finally Settles with Tolkien Family
It's kind of hard to believe, but over five years from when the third installment of the Lord of the Rings trilogy was released, the Tolkien family is finally getting paid for their gross participation in the series. And, frankly, the only reason New Line is finally paying them is because they want to make The Hobbit. Peter Jackson also had to sue New Line to get his gross point money. New Line is currently paying a legal settlement to Jackson--who was blocked by former New Line topper Bob Shaye from auditing the studio until Warner Bros absorbed the company in March 2008.
Both matters have finally been settled.
A studio blocking payment is nothing new. But, when a series of films makes billions for a studio, you'd think they'd at least want to be a little generous. Not so. Instead they were dragged kicking and screaming to their check book. To pay a literary icon's family foundation, no less.
"The Trustees regret that legal action was necessary, but are glad that this dispute has been settled on satisfactory terms that will allow the Tolkien Trust properly to pursue its charitable objectives. The Trustees acknowledge that New Line may now proceed with its proposed films of ‘The Hobbit,"” Christopher Tolkien commented.
According to Warner Bros.’ President & Chief Operating Officer Alan Horn, future litigation won't be necessary. “We deeply value the contributions of the Tolkien novels to the success of our films and are pleased to have put this litigation behind us. We all look forward to a mutually productive and beneficial relationship in the future.”
Pretty pathetic on New Line's part, if you ask me. And, Bob Shaye. I won't be seeing The Hobbit in theaters. Instead, I think I'm going to send the Tolkien Trust a check for $20, and rent it on Netflix.
Posted on 09/09/2009 3:50 PM by Todd Carr