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Wednesday, May 29, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

‘Left Behind’ Financier Says He’s Been Cheated

CHICAGO (CN) - Panda Media says it spent $18 million on advertising for the new "Left Behind" film released today, but the film's producer failed to honor its agreement to give Panda 5 percent of the movie's revenue.

Panda Media Fund sued Left Behind Investments, Stoney Lake Entertainment, Cloud Ten Pictures, Freestyle Releasing, Tivoli Enterprises, Kerasotes Theaters, Hobson Financial Group of Illinois, and American Multi-Cinema Inc. in Cook County Court.

"Left Behind" is an apocalyptic thriller movie starring Nicholas Cage, based on the best-selling book series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins.

Released in theaters today, the film is produced by Stoney Lake Entertainment and Cloud Ten Pictures.

"Plaintiff Panda Media first become involved in the 'Left Behind' movie in approximately November 2012. At that time, David Williams of Panda was approached by Michael Walker and Paul Lalonde of Cloud Ten about providing a prints and advertising (P and A) commitment for the Left Behind movie, to assist in obtaining financing for the production of the movie. The production costs for Left Behind are believed to be approximately $20 million dollars," the complaint says.

The agreement allegedly entitled Panda to five percent of the movie's domestic net revenues for seven years following its release in exchange for financing worth $18 million.

However, after receiving the money, Panda says, "defendants took for themselves, without any compensation being paid to plaintiff, the P and A commitment and used that commitment for their own benefit for the purpose of financing the production and distribution of the move from which defendants are expected to earn millions of dollars.

"Defendants actions amount to an unjust enrichment in that defendants have benefitted, from their use of the Panda P and A commitment to the detriment of Panda. Panda has received nothing from the defendant, or from the movie and was informed that it will not receive any revenues or any benefits from the release and distribution of the movie and that no credits or logo will be displayed when the movie is released. Defendants would not have been able to make the 'Left Behind' movie but for the Panda P and A commitment and improperly used by defendants to obtain financing and other benefits," according to the complaint.

Panda Media seeks more than $2 million in damages for unjust enrichment, and an injunction prohibiting the distribution of proceeds from the release of the movie.

It is represented by Adrian Vuckovich with Collins, Bargione & Vuckovich.

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