Legendary Settles ‘Godzilla’ Producers Lawsuit

Legendary Pictures has settled the lawsuit it faced by three producers who alleged they were unfairly tossed off “Godzilla,” weeks before the case was to go to trial.

Dan Lin, Roy Lee and Doug Davidson sued Legendary and its president Jon Jashni in early 2013 over the production company taking them off “Godzilla,” accusing Legendary of trying to avoid paying the producers millions of dollars. The suit was filed after Legendary sought a declaratory judgment that the three producers had no claim over the project.

Terms of the settlement in Los Angeles Superior Court were not immediately disclosed.

Legendary said in its court filings that the trio’s efforts consisted only of introducing a screenwriter and providing contributing notes that were not used. Legendary asserted that the compensation for all three under the agreement was limited to a $25,000 development fee.

Lin, Lee and Davidson said in their counterclaim that the three relied on a 2009 pledge by Legendary and spent the next several years selecting screenwriters, developing the story, characters and screenplay and readying the movie for production.

The counterclaim also asserted that Legendary made an oral agreement in 2010 to pay the three producers a $25,000 development fee, fixed compensation of $1.3 million and contingent compensation of 3% of first-dollar gross receipts after they assisted Legendary in obtaining the “Godzilla” rights from Japan’s Toho Co.

Legendary’s Thomas Tull and Jashni remained as producers, along with Mary Parent and Brian Rogers. Lin and Lee had been included as producers since the original announcement in 2010 in which Legendary also said “Godzilla” would be produced under its co-production and co-financing deal with Warner Bros.

“Godzilla,” directed by Gareth Edwards and starring Bryan Cranston, Elizabeth Olsen and Aaron Taylor-Johnson, was a solid performer last year with $528 million in worldwide grosses for Warner Bros.

Lin and Lee are producers on Warner’s “The Lego Movie” and the three upcoming Lego films.

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