It doesn’t sound like Legendary Entertainment is terribly happy with WarnerMedia’s announcement last week to throw two of their expensive films such as Dune and Godzilla vs Kong on HBO Max as part of their new day-and-date model for the entire 2021 Warner Bros. release slate, all 17 films.
The announcement was just as shocking to Legendary Entertainment as it was to everyone else because they weren’t given advance notice or even knew it was happening. Deadline reports that Legendary is aiming to challenge the move by WarnerMedia as they never gave them advance notice before the announcement, the latter is something that both Deadline and The Hollywood Reporter have mentioned in separate reports.
I’m hearing that Legendary Entertainment either has or will send legal letters to Warner Bros as soon as today, challenging the decision to put the Denis Villenueve-directed Dune into the HBO Max deal, and maybe Godzilla vs Kong as well.
WarnerMedia blocked a hefty $250 million offer from Netflix which likely only adds to Legendary’s frustrations.
On the latter, Legendary reportedly had Netflix ready to pull the film from Warner Bros for around $250 million, before WarnerMedia blocked it. Sources said Legendary had no advance notice before last week’s announcement that both Dune and Godzilla vs. Kong were part of the HBO Max plan.
Variety also adding that this might turn into a lawsuit if a deal isn’t agreed upon.
Legendary Entertainment, the production company that co-financed Dune and Godzilla vs. Kong, may take legal action against Warner Bros. over the studio’s decision to send its movies to HBO Max at the same time they debut in cinemas.
Sources familiar with the situation say top brass at Legendary are trying to have conversations with Warner Bros. regarding its upcoming films… Legendary is hoping to first negotiate a more generous deal, but isn’t taking legal action off the table should the two companies fail to come to a compromise. One possibility is that Warner Bros. would buy the films outright from Legendary. No legal challenge has been filed yet, but a suit could materialize early this week. It’s unclear what legal grounds Legendary would use to challenge the decision, though it would likely involve some breach of contract.
While WarnerMedia dodged questions concerning if the day-and-date model would continue into 2022 and beyond, AT&T CEO John Stankey alluded to The Washington Post they won’t be going back even post-pandemic giving the impression the model is staying.
STANKEY: “In March, we unleashed a new normal in society. That horse left the barn. I don’t think any of us are going to change that dynamic.”
SOURCE: DEADLINE & VARIETY