Trimark sues over ‘Weeks’

Lions Gate, others defend rights to sequel

Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way.

The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel.

In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County Superior Court, Trimark alleges that when it acquired the domestic distribution rights to “Another 9-1/2 Weeks” from Hoffman’s Cinevisions in 1995, it also obtained the rights to acquire all future “prequels, remakes and sequels.”

The deal even specified a formula for computing how much Trimark would pay for later installments, based on their production budgets, according to the suit.

The complaint further alleges that Cinevisions licensed Lions Gate and Barnholtz to produce a prequel without giving Trimark the right to distribute it.

“There was an obligation on the part of Cinevisions to let us know this was going forward, and to let us know what the budget was,” said Trimark director of legal and business affairs Wayne Levin. “At no time did they present it to us.”

None of the defendants could be reached for comment Monday.

“Another 9-1/2 Weeks,” which starred Mickey Rourke, Agathe de la Fontaine and Angie Everhart, premiered on Showtime and later was distributed on videocassette by Trimark. That film was itself a follow-up to the 1986 erotic drama “9-1/2 Weeks,” which starred Rourke and Kim Basinger.

According to Levin, Trimark has contacted the defendants in an effort to resolve the matter amicably, with no success. “The first thing we’re seeking is to obtain the rights to distribute the picture,” said Levin.

In the event that isn’t possible, however, Trimark is seeking damages. While no dollar amount is specified, the company is looking to recoup any profit it lost from not distributing the film. “There may also be a potential for punitive damages given the conduct of some of the parties involved,” said Levin.

More Film

  • 'Piercing' Review

    Sundance Film Review: 'Piercing'

    Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way. The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel. In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County […]

  • Sundance: Lionsgate Nabs U.K. Rights for

    Sundance: Lionsgate Nabs U.K. Rights for 'Colette' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way. The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel. In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County […]

  • 'Hangover' Producer Scott Budnick Forms Good

    'Hangover' Producer Scott Budnick Forms Good Films, Endeavor is Lead Investor (EXCLUSIVE)

    Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way. The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel. In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County […]

  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg Talks Supreme Court

    Ruth Bader Ginsburg on #MeToo Movement, Her SNL Parody, and Supreme Court Retirement

    Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way. The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel. In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County […]

  • Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

    'Jumanji' Leads International Box Office, Hits $768 Million Worldwide

    Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way. The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel. In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County […]

  • 'Phantom Thread,' 'Darkest Hour' Shine as

    'Phantom Thread,' 'Darkest Hour' Shine as Oscar Nominations Loom

    Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way. The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel. In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County […]

  • 'Jumanji' Stays Strong, Topping '12 Strong,'

    'Jumanji' Stays Strong, Topping '12 Strong,' 'Den of Thieves' With $20 Million

    Trimark Pictures is getting steamed up over “The First 9-1/2 Weeks” — and not in a good way. The Santa Monica-based indie is suing producer Peter Hoffman, Lions Gate Films and former Trimark co-topper Barry Barnholtz, among others, over distribution rights to the recently completed prequel. In the complaint, filed April 28 in L.A. County […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content