Tolkien’s heirs sue New Line Cinema over profits from Lord of the Rings trilogy
The trust that manages the estate of J.R.R. Tolkein’s “Lord of the Rings” trilogy and intellectual property sued New Line Cinema, the Hollywood studio that obtained the rights to produce films based upon his works. The trust slams New Line, alleging that it’s been “engag[ing] in the infamous practice of ‘Hollywood accounting’ by using various ‘bookkeeping’ devices to delay paying Tolkien’s trust.
The suit claims that:
“The three hugely successful films based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s beloved “Lord of the Rings” trilogy have grossed nearly $6 billion. Despite these record-setting revenues amounts derived ultimately from Professor Tolkien’s classic fantasy novels….[New Line] has paid nothing to Tolkien’s successors with respect to their contractually-mandated participation in the gross revenues of the films.
…[I]n spite of the Film’s unprecedented financial success, platiniffs have not received a single penny of their contracted share of the gross receipts earned from the Films.” emphases in original