Lawsuit Claims Paramount Pictures Cheated Star-Studded Film


The producers of motion picture “Middle Men,” a drama about the birth of the business of internet pornography, filed a breach of contract lawsuit against Paramount Pictures claiming the movie studio failed to properly promote, distribute, and pay royalties on the film. The movie was set up for success with director George Gallo and well-known actors Luke Wilson, Giovanni Ribisi, and James Caan. Despite buzz around the film at Cannes, the lawsuit explains that Paramount purposely depressed the film’s box office performance by withholding marketing and only releasing the movie in limited cities – showing only one screening of the movie in New York City on a Sunday afternoon for opening weekend. In addition to failing to fully uphold a $7 million marketing agreement, Paramount sold the movie to the premium cable channel EPIX for streaming to services such as Amazon Prime and Netflix. Paramount holds a 43-percent stake in EPIX. The lawsuit says that Middle Pictures Inc., the film’s producers, have not received their fair share of the profits from streaming “Middle Men.

We plan to prove that when Paramount agreed to distribute ‘Middle Men’, it only saw the film as an opportunity for their own financial gain at the expense of the independent film company,” says Jeffrey Simonof Dallas-based Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett, PC, which represents Middle Pictures Inc. “Evidence shows us that the studio simply bundled the critically-acclaimed film with other Paramount products.
Simon says the movie studio giant either can’t or won’t show auditors in full detail  if, or how, the $6.8 million that Middle Pictures provided for marketing was spent.

For more information on this lawsuit and to request an interview with Jeffrey Simon, contact Mark Annick: mark@androvett.com.

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