Oooh, the gloves are off now. Robert Shaye strikes back at Peter Jackson, banning him from New Line!!
Published at: Jan. 10, 2007, 9:22 a.m. CST by quint
Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. The dirty fighting is starting between Peter Jackson and New Line. Moviehole.net reported on an interview with Bob Shaye done by Sci-Fi.com, where he rips into Jackson and says he's not welcome at New Line ever again.
He points out what Jackson has been paid so far on Rings... a lot of money... but he doesn't answer why New Line refuses to allow Jackson's representatives into the books. I believe Jackson is suing over his contracted percentage on the FELLOWSHIP DVDs, but from Jackson's letter to the fans about the situation, it sounds like he just wants to make sure he's not being short changed. So, the question still remains... If New Line is sure they've fulfilled their contractual obligation to Jackson and Co, why are they fighting this?
I guess now it's personal and Shaye is going to do his damndest to fast track HOBBIT, which is always a good reason to make a film. Here's hoping MGM, who still owns the North American distribution rights, puts their foot down and stops a hastily made HOBBIT movie. If they can filibuster New Line and Saul Zaentz gets the rights back, he's said he wants Jackson to do it.
Even if Jackson ends up having nothing to do with a HOBBIT film, I'd still love to see it made right. Not just for the right reasons, but with the right amount of care put into the project. His blessing on the project would also open up the possibility of returning actors who wouldn't come back in this new situation at New Line. I know Ian McKellen has publicly stated that he won't return unless Jackson does.
So, a clusterfuck. Hopefully the fans aren't the ones who take it up the pooper in the end, but I think that's where Mr. Shaye is taking us right now. What do you folks think? (Heads up thanks to “3-Peat Champion of King of the Mountain: Rick Rambis”)