Judge tosses Kaye’s ‘X’ suit

Court rules for DGA, New Line

A federal judge in Los Angeles has thrown out a lawsuit filed by director Tony Kaye against New Line Cinema and the Directors Guild of America over their refusal to remove Kaye’s name from “American History X.”

U.S. District Court Judge Dean D. Pregerson sided with the studio and the union after a settlement conference last week with attorneys in the 1998 action. The dismissal order, entered Monday, was made “with prejudice,” meaning that the action may not be refiled.

The British director filed the suit, seeking $200 million in damages, over the refusal by New Line and the DGA to allow Kaye to use his own choice of pseudonym in “American History X” film credits. Kaye had refused the “Alan Smithee” pseudonym in favor of “Humpty Dumpty.”

Kaye alleged that New Line and the DGA rigged an arbitration and hearing that followed their refusal to allow him to use the name Humpty Dumpty after lead actor Edward Norton changed the film in order to increase the length of his role.

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