New Line & Tolkien Finally Settle Lord of the Rings Litigation
by Alex Billington
September 8, 2009
Though the exact terms of the settlement were not released, THR reports today that New Line Cinema, the Tolkien estate, and publisher Harper Collins have finally settled the big lawsuit over profits from the Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings films. For those of you who aren't enraptured with the legal goings-on of Hollywood, the Tolkien estate had sued New Line for an approximated $150 million in damages last year for failing to pay the 7.5 percent of the gross they were contractually obligated to receive from the three films -- which, need I remind you, netted around $6 billion combined. Finally all Tolkien lawsuits are now settled!
Commenting on the settlement, Christopher Tolkien said: "The Trustees regret that legal action was necessary, but are glad that this dispute has been settled on satisfactory terms that will allow the Tolkien Trust properly to pursue its charitable objectives. The Trustees acknowledge that New Line may now proceed with its proposed films of The Hobbit."
Included in the suit, the Tolkien estate had requested a court order that would have given them the right to terminate any rights New Line had to other Tolkien properties, including the Jackson-produced, Guillermo del Toro-directed The Hobbit. Thankfully that struggle is no more. This finally wraps up all outstanding lawsuits surrounding Tolkien and various companies that would've stalled The Hobbit's development, as reported previously, since this could've shut that down before shooting. Good news all around, and good riddance it's all behind us. Now to look forward to The Hobbit! Head over to Deadline Hollywood for more.