Peter Jackson Responds to New Line Nastiness

by | January 12, 2007 | Comments

Just yesterday we reported that New Line chief Bob Shaye was, like, reallllllly mad at Peter Jackson, and also that he pretty much blacklisted the filmmaker from ever darkening the NL doors again. Less than 24 hours later, we have a response from Mr. Jackson.

As is often the case, Peter Jackson communicates to the internetted world by way of AICN. Here’s exactly (and completely) what the man had to say: "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."

Kinda makes one wonder why Shaye would have gone public with this sort of stuff in the first place. I mean, it sure does make for some pretty juicy reading, but don’t these types of battles generally take place behind closed doors? Do these mega-rich movie-makers actually CARE what we think about broken promises, hurt feelings and unfinished audits?

All I know is I want a "Hobbit" movie. If Peter Jackson can’t direct it, I say give the thing to Terry Gilliam. Who’s with me?

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