(CN) – Sharon Stone swapped lawsuits with producer Bob Yari over her aborted trip to Cuba to shoot a film about Ernest Hemingway’s life.
Yari’s company, Magenta Light Productions, claims Stone “failed and refused” to travel to Cuba to film “Papa,” about Hemingway’s time in Cuba, where he wrote “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and “The Old Man and the Sea.”
Hemingway bought a house in Havana in 1940, and lived there with his fourth wife, Mary Welsh, for several years. Stone had been cast as Mary.
Magenta says Stone demanded $250,000 on top of the $500,000 they agreed she would be paid for acting in and promoting the film.
But according to Stone, the producer reneged on her payment when she refused to say her travel was for a “cultural endeavor.”
The lawsuits were filed one day apart in the Los Angeles County Superior Court’s Santa Monica branch.
Magenta and a company called Sixth Floor Literary Properties, of which Yari is a managing member, say Stone could have obtained a general license to travel to Cuba but instead insisted on getting a license specifically for the production.
As a result, Magenta says it was forced to “shut down the picture in Cuba” until it could obtain the specific license — issued nearly six months later, in May 2013. The producer says Stone assured Magenta via email “that she remained committed to the picture as long as her schedule permitted.”
However, Stone claims the specific license was mandatory, and without it “she would be subjecting herself to potential criminal liability.”
She claims Yari, Magenta and Sixth Floor advised her “to commit a fraud and lie on her license application with the United States governmental agencies and to check a box indicating she was going to Cuba for a ‘cultural endeavor’ rather than to render professional acting services in connection with the picture.”
Yari allegedly insisted in an email that “NO ONE has EVER been jailed for travel to Cuba.”
But the “Basic Instinct” actress says she “refused to break the law and travel to Cuba without the requisite license.”
Filming in Cuba is now slated for this March 22 through April 20, according to the producer’s lawsuit.
“It is essential for Stone to turn up and perform the role during such dates; otherwise Magenta will be forced to shut down the picture again, at significant cost, expense and damages to plaintiffs,” the lawsuit states.
Stone says she was ready to start filming Dec. 8, 2012, as originally intended, but Yari’s failure to obtain the required license “rendered it impossible” for her to perform under the agreement.
Her lawsuit also notes that “Yari’s failure to abide by his contractual payment obligations has resulted in Yari being named as a defendant in over 25 public lawsuits (not including private arbitrations or guild actions that may have been brought against him).” (Parentheses in original.)
Magenta and Sixth Floor are suing Stone and her loan-out company, The Vanguard, for breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, anticipatory breach of contract and intentional misrepresentation. They are represented by Behzad Nahai of the Nahai Law Group.
Stone demands $500,000 for breach of contract and fraud, and is represented by Martin Singer.
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