Thursday, April 09, 2015

Richard vs. Goliath

Funny thing. I've known artists in similar situations.

Over 20 years after the comedy [What About Bob] came out, [Richard Dreyfuss] wants his accountants to take a look at the studio’s books to see what he could be owed – and he’s taking the House of Mouse to court over their refusal.

... Dreyfuss today sued Walt Disney Pictures for breach of contract and other claims over the defendants not letting the firm of Robinson & Company do an audit for him and the widow of Turner & Hooch producer Raymond Wagner, who also wants a look at Disney’s ledgers. ...

“Because Disney will not allow Richard Dreyfuss’ chosen auditor to audit, because of the delay caused, and because of Disney’s overall hostility towards audits, an accounting under Court supervision is warranted,” the 7-claim filing says. ...

“Motion picture and television companies detest having to pay net and gross profit participants and have consistently and historically withheld significant amounts of profits from participants,” bluntly notes the filing. “This is why profit participation auditors in the motion picture and television industries exist; these auditors oftentimes find monies due to profit participants.” ...

I knew an animation artist some years ago who pitched a live-action movie to a big, fat conglomerate. After long development, the conglomerate made the movie and reaped millions. It owed the artist a promised $100,000 "if the picture was produced," but then bacedk out of the commitment.

The artist, who was royally ticked off, took the studio to court. The studio stoutly resisted ... until the week before the trial date. It then paid the $100,000.

Greed is an ugly thing.


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