The suit was filed Friday in Los Angeles Superior Court by Rodriguez and his affiliate companies against Sergei Bespalov, Marina Bespalov, Maddartico, Vrelonovama, Aldamisa Entertainment and SC2 Productions.
It alleged breach of contract and fraud. The suit seeks a jury trial and unspecified damages.
“In order to induce Plaintiffs to enter into agreements with various of the Defendants relating to the Pictures, Defendants, including, specifically, Sergei Bespalov, falsely assured and represented to Plaintiffs that Defendants had more than sufficient financial resources and cash flow – not only from and related to the Pictures, but also from other projects – to honor all of their financial obligations to Plaintiffs.”
The suit alleged that when the money was not paid as promised, Rodriguez paid from his own funds to “Machete Kills” screenwriter Kyle Ward.
Plaintiffs include Fifth Brain Inc., El Chingon Inc., El Chingon Productions, El Chingon Investments and Quickdraw Holdings.
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Rodriguez was a director and producer on both films, which underperformed at the box office.
“Sin City 2: A Dame to Kill For” had a budget estimated at $65 million and starred Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke and Jessica Alba. It was released in August in the U.S. by the Weinstein Co. and grossed $13 million; worldwide grosses hit $38 million.
“Machete Kills,” starred Danny Trejo, Amber Heard, Mel Gibson, Sofia Vergara and Antonio Banderas. It was released last year, carried a reported of $20 million and grossed about $15 million worldwide.
UPDATE, 9:10 a.m., Oct 21, 2014 — Aldamisa has issued a response:
Steven Marenberg of the law firm Irell & Manella LLP, has described the lawsuit as being “without merit, and apparently filed to distract from Rodriguez’s own breaches of contract and malfeasance” in connection with the films “Machete Kills” and “Sin City 2: A Dame to Kill For.”
Marenberg continued, “The financiers of these films fulfilled all of their obligations and provided tens of millions of dollars in funding for the two projects.”
Sergei Bespalov, Co-Chairman of Aldamisa Entertainment, added, “We are proud of our track record of developing, producing and supporting many great films, including our most recent, the critically and popularly acclaimed movie ‘Chef.’
“Mr. Rodriguez’s complaint is full of misstatements and omissions, and we will vigorously litigate these meritless claims. We are confident that a court of law will agree that it was Mr. Rodriguez who breached the contracts and acted improperly.”