Lawsuits aplenty!

Legal wrangles over LOTR and Watchmen

Looks like New Line will be headed back to court as another group is claiming its fair share of the gazillions of dollars that the studio made from the slightly successful Lord Of The Rings movies.

Variety reports that the Tolkien Trust (keepers of the author’s estate) and book publishers HarperCollins have launched a lawsuit to nab more than $150 million in compensatory and punitive damages from New Line, which the Tolkiens and Harpers claim failed to pay out enough of the precious. Oh, and they want a court order terminating the company’s rights to other Tolkien properties, which won’t much help the development of The Hobbit.

We’re guessing that throwing Tolkien family members a token cameo in the new films probably won’t work this time.

And over at 20th Century Fox, they’re getting all hot and bothered about Warner Bros’ new Watchmen film. Fox argues that it nabbed all the rights to the comics’ issues along with Charles McKeown and Sam Hamm’s script drafts back in the late ’80s and that producer Laurence Gordon agreed to buy them out if he took the project elsewhere. Now, like the aliens from out of War Of The Worlds, they watch with envious eyes as Zach Snyder works on Warners’ shiny, actually-coming-to-cinemas version.

The Hollywood Reporter has all the details, but basically they want damages or they’ll try to stop Watchmen ever reaching the screen. Which would be rubbish.

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