Thursday, January 11, 2007

Hobbit Tennis

Aint it Cool News have served up Wingnut's response to Bob Shaye's Jackson bashing. Here it is again, to give Jackson's points that tiny, weeny sliver of wider exposure:

Our issue with New Line Cinema has only ever been about their refusal to account for financial anomalies that surfaced from a partial audit of The Fellowship of the Ring. Contrary to recent comments made by Bob Shaye, we attempted to discuss the issues raised by the Fellowship audit with New Line for over a year but the studio was and continues to be completely uncooperative. This has compelled us to file a lawsuit to pursue our contractual rights under the law. Nobody likes taking legal action, but the studio left us with no alternative.

For over two years, New Line has denied us the ability to audit The Two Towers and The Return of the King, despite repeated requests. Film auditing is a common and straightforward practice within the industry and we don't understand why New Line Cinema has taken this position.

In light of these circumstances, I didn't think it was appropriate for me to be involved in New Line Cinema's 40th Anniversary video. I have never discussed this video with any of the cast of The Lord of the Rings. The issues that Bob Shaye has with the cast pre-date this law suit by many years.

Fundamentally, our legal action is about holding New Line to it's contractual obligations and promises. It is regrettable that Bob has chosen to make it personal. I have always had the highest respect and affection for Bob and other senior management at New Line and continue to do so.

You might think it wouldn't be worth New Line's while making a Hobbit quickly, before their option is up, that it would be doomed to fail due to Pro-Jackson action but if the box office returns of Snakes on a Plane, Serenity and Slither underlined one thing between them, it's that, even now, the 'informed' film-community of web geeks don't account for anything like the proportion of the moviegoing public it was once assumed (and by many, hoped). A film of The Hobbit would doubtless turn a huge profit even if Sean McNamara was handed the directing gig.

That's a point, actually. I wonder if McNamara would even dare take the job? Or Steve Miner?

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