×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

WME Seeks Dismissal of Writers Guild Lawsuit Over Packaging Fees

WME is seeking to dismiss the Writers Guild of America’s suit alleging packaging fees are illegal.

Lawyers for the agency filed the motion late Monday in federal court in Los Angeles, asserting that the WGA has failed to state a claim under which relief can be granted and that the court lacks jurisdiction. It asked that the court set a hearing for Oct. 11.

The move comes three weeks after the WGA withdrew its state court suit against WME, CAA, UTA and ICM Partners and re-filed suit in federal court. The guild is seeking a declaration that packaging fees are unlawful. It’s also asking the court to order agencies to provide an accounting of all packaging fee deals involving guild members and disgorge all profits generated from “unlawful and unfair” packaging fees.

UTA brushed off the filing of the new litigation on Aug. 19, asserting that the move was a “complete retreat” by the WGA in the face of “certain defeat” in the state court.

“The lawsuit represented the WGA’s ill-considered and poorly executed campaign that continues to harm writers, who labor on unnecessarily without effective representation,” UTA added. “The new claims are equally ill-considered, vitriolic and baseless. UTA is confident that they will ultimately be dismissed as well.”

The WGA West and WGA East will conclude elections next week. The key issue in the WGA West election is over the leadership’s aggressive stance toward the agencies, which included requiring members to fire their agents in April had the agents not signed a franchise agreement banning agents from taking packaging fees and engaging in affiliate production.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Benjamin Wallfisch - scoring session, Abbey

    Composer Benjamin Wallfisch Signs With Gorfaine/Schwartz Agency

    Composer Benjamin Wallfisch has signed with the Gorfaine/Schwartz Agency (GSA) for worldwide representation, in partnership with London-based agency COOL Music Ltd. A top composer, whose scoring credits include “It Chapter Two,” Shazam!” Hellboy,” “Hidden Figures” and “Hostile Planet,” among others, Wallfisch has worked on over 75 feature films and is a member of the BAFTA [...]

  • The Moneychanger

    Toronto Film Review: ‘The Moneychanger’

    Uruguayan auteur Federico Veiroj (“The Apostate,” “Belmonte”) broadens his usual intimate dramatic scope to diminishing returns for his fifth feature, “The Moneychanger,” . Adapted from a novella by compatriot Juan Enrique Gruber, the period (mid-1950s to mid-1970s) tale centers on the eponymous character, an amoral currency exchanger, who winds up laundering some of the dirtiest [...]

  • Send Me to the Clouds

    Film Review: ‘Send Me to the Clouds’

    The social and economic pressures felt by China’s “leftover women” — referring to those older than 26 and unmarried — are examined in “Send Me to the Clouds,” a rewarding dramedy about a 30-ish journalist seeking financial reward and sexual fulfillment after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Bold by mainland standards for presenting a positive [...]

  • Jamie Bell Without Remorse

    Jamie Bell Joins Michael B. Jordan in 'Without Remorse' Adaptation (EXCLUSIVE)

    Jamie Bell is in final negotiations to join Michael B. Jordan in Paramount’s adaptation of the Tom Clancy novel “Without Remorse.” Stefano Sollima, who most recently helmed “Sicario: Day of the Soldado,” is directing from a script by “Sicaro” screenwriter Taylor Sheridan. As previously announced, Jordan is starring as operations officer John Clark, also known [...]

  • Elizabeth McGovern, Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter,

    'Downton Abbey' Movie Sequel? Producers Tease That They Have 'Some Ideas'

    “Downton Abbey” holds the record as the most-nominated international show at the Emmy Awards with 69 nominations and 15 wins — and now, it stands a chance to nab an Oscar. More than three years after the beloved series signed off the air following six critically-acclaimed seasons, “Downton Abbey” is making its big-screen debut. “It [...]

  • Todd Phillips Joaquin Phoenix Joker Movie

    What's Woker Than 'Joker'? Film Critics Made Everything Political at Fall Festivals

    “Is it just me, or is it getting crazier out there?” asks Joaquin Phoenix, playing a deranged incel version of the DC supervillain in “Joker,” the unconventional comic book movie that’s sucked up much of the air from the fall festival circuit. Like an aggro caricature of the “involuntary celibates” who troll message boards online, [...]

  • Running Against the Wind

    Young Africans' Dreams Are Focus of Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda Oscar Picks

    Films about young Africans trying to fulfill their dreams in the face of war, poverty, tradition and other forms of adversity have been submitted for Oscar consideration by three East African nations. The selections by Kenya, Ethiopia and Uganda to compete in the international feature film category reflect the relative youth of filmmaking in the [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content