Movie Producer Sues Over ‘Crow’ Reboot

     LOS ANGELES (CN) – A producer of “The Crow” movie and sequels claims in court that Relativity Media owes him $1 million for breaching an agreement to hire him on a reboot of the action franchise.
     Jeff Most and Jeff Most Productions sued Edward R. Pressman Film Corp., Sammyjack Productions, and Relativity Media, in Superior Court.
     Most claims that he and his company were producers on all the parts of the “The Crow” franchise, including three sequels, and a short-lived television show.
     He signed three producer agreements, from 1995 to 2002, with “The Crow” rights holder, Edward Pressman Film, Most says in the complaint.
     Pressman later sold rights to Relativity for the planned reboot, which the complaint refers to as “Crow V.”
     At issue is a provision in Most’s producer contract for the last film in series, “The Crow: Wicked Prayer.”
     Most claims that agreement gives him “right of first negotiation” to produce any sequel or remake, for $400,000 in compensation.
     He claims the agreement was good for seven years after the 2005 release of “The Crow: Wicked Prayer
     Most claims the language in his contract provides for compensation “even if Relativity or any entity producing ‘Crow V’ opts to not use plaintiffs in a production capacity.”
     He claims he would make more money from the reboot because earlier “Crow” movies were “comparatively smaller film productions,” but the budget for the new film is roughly $70 million.
     Edward Pressman Film is obligated to provide a copy of its assignment agreement with Relativity, Most says in the complaint, but he claims it refused to disclose details, and told him in 2009 that no producer had elected to make the movie.
     But in April 2011, media reports suggested that a new “Crow” movie starring Bradley Cooper was in the works, and the same month, Weinstein Company filed a state court complaint against Relativity in a dispute over distribution rights.
     “It was at this time that, despite ERPFC’s [Edward Pressman Film Corp.] prior statements that no election to produce had been made, that plaintiffs were aware or reasonably should have been aware of an election to produce ‘Crow V,'” the complaint states.
     Most claims that Relativity Media lawyers confirmed his right of first negotiation and said they could hammer out details later.
     “However, despite the passage of another year, and efforts by plaintiffs to commence these negotiations, Relativity has yet to engage in, and now refuses to engage in, negotiations regarding plaintiffs’ role as a producer on ‘Crow V’ or compensation for the same,” the complaint states.
     Most says he is “ready, willing, and able” to produce the new movie “if desired.”
     Released in 1994, “The Crow” starred Brandon Lee as a resurrected rock musician who seeks revenge on the people who murdered him.
     Lee, the son of Bruce Lee, died from an accidental gunshot wound before the production wrapped. The film was finished using digital special effects, and grossed $140 million worldwide.
     According to Variety, Welsh actor Luke Evans is to star in “The Crow” reboot, with Javier Gutierrez directing. Filming is scheduled to begin in early 2014.
     Most demands $1 million for breach of contract, breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, fraud and deceit, intentional interference with contractual relations, and an accounting of net profits from the previous “Crow” movies and television show.
     He claims that Edward Pressman has sent him no profit-sharing payments, receipts or statements for more than four years.
     He is represented by Jeffrey Gersh with Gersh|Derby of Encino.

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