You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Sahara’ writer hit with bill

Cussler must pay Anschutz close to $14 million

“Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well.

The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment.

In 2004, Cussler sued the production company — owned by billionaire Philip Anschutz — claiming it breached a contract that gave him final approval of the pic’s script, an adaptation of his bestseller of the same name.

It was hoped that the pic, distribbed by Paramount, would launch a franchise, starring Matthew McConaughey, but plans fizzled after pic wound up earning $69 million in 2005. It cost a reported $160 million to produce.

Cussler’s been on the losing end of the suit since 2007, when a jury ruled in favor of Crusader, which accused the author of inflating the number of novels that “Sahara” sold. The jury ordered Cussler to pay $5 million at the time.

But Crusader went one step further and sued Cussler to pay its $18 million in legal fees, as well. A judge this week dropped the amount to $13.9 million.

Cussler is appealing the order. But should he end up paying the amount, the case will have cost him $27 million once his own legal fees are taken into account.

More Film

  • Amanda Fuller's Thriller 'Fashionista' Bought by

    Film News Roundup: Amanda Fuller's Thriller 'Fashionista' Bought by Freestyle

    “Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well. The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment. In 2004, […]

  • Sundance 2018: Where Are the Masterpieces?

    Sundance 2018: Where Are the Masterpieces? Sorry, There Are None (Opinion)

    “Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well. The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment. In 2004, […]

  • EDITORIAL USE ONLY / NO MERCHANDISINGMandatory

    Bradford Dillman, Star of 'Compulsion,' Dies at 87

    “Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well. The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment. In 2004, […]

  • Duke Nukem

    John Cena in Talks to Star in 'Duke Nukem' Movie

    “Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well. The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment. In 2004, […]

  • 'And Breathe Normally' Review: Sundance Film

    Sundance Film Review: 'And Breathe Normally'

    “Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well. The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment. In 2004, […]

  • Baby Driver

    'Baby Driver,' 'Dunkirk,' 'Shape of Water' Lead Golden Reel Nominations for Sound

    “Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well. The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment. In 2004, […]

  • The Guilty

    Sundance: Magnolia Buys 'The Guilty'

    “Sahara” didn’t just flop at the box office, it’s cost novelist Clive Cussler a chunk of change as well. The author has been ordered by a Los Angeles Super Court judge to pony up nearly $14 million in legal fees after he failed to win a lawsuit against the pic’s producer, Crusader Entertainment. In 2004, […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content