Sean Astin Gets Political In Kickstarter Plea

By | Tuesday October 1, 2013 @ 6:30pm PDT
Mike Fleming

While some diehard fans follow the career moves of Twilight Saga cast members with fervor, I find myself more interested with the post-franchise careers of the cast of my favorite movie trilogy, The Lord Of The Rings. Especially the Hobbits. I’ve written often about how Elijah Wood, beyond starring in the FX series Wilfred, has gotten into producing and has turned his Frodo image on its ear with roles like the slasher he plays in Maniac. Dominic Monaghan found his calling on the TV show Wild Things, crawling into godawful places to grab onto dangerous-looking oversized insects and animals. Now, Sean Astin, of Samwise Gamgee fame, has taken to Kickstarter for his passion project. That is hosting Vox Populi, a political interview show on the web. Astin, who still makes his living acting and is currently part of the cast of Guillermo del Toro’s FX pilot The Strain, is looking for $30,000 from Kickstarter to take his web show to the next level. That means hiring a couple of people so he doesn’t have to do everything himself. Read More »

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Warner Bros Scores Legal Win In ‘Lord Of The Rings’ Battle With Tolkien Estate

By | Thursday July 11, 2013 @ 12:41pm PDT

Warner Bros’ claims against the estate of The Lord Of The Rings author J.R.R Tolkien will live to fight another day. A federal judge today rejected the estate trustees and Fourth Age Ltd’s motion to … Read More »

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Warner Bros Fires Back At ‘Hobbit’ Creator’s Estate & Publisher In $80M Case

By | Wednesday March 13, 2013 @ 3:35pm PDT

Warner Bros says a multimillion-dollar merchandising lawsuit from the estate of Lord of The Rings creator J.R.R. Tolkien and publisher HarperCollins has hurt it financially, undermined its rights to the author’s properties, and it wants big bucks in damages. “Counterclaim Defendants are simply attempting to extract additional huge sums of money for rights and/or take back rights that they had already granted,” the studio says in documents (read them here) filed this week in federal court. While damages are not specified in the counterclaim, the request for a jury trial does state that Warner Bros lost millions in license fees because of the fallout from the rights dispute. The claims by the studio come almost five months after the Tolkien Estate Ltd, its trustees and News Corp-owned publisher sued Warners, its New Line subsidiary and The Saul Zaentz Company’s Middle-earth Enterprises division in an $80 million copyright infringement and breach of contract dispute over video games, online slot machines and other digital merchandising. That legal move occurred just under a month before the first movie in the Warner Bros-distributed and Peter Jackson-directed trilogy The Hobbit hit the big screen December 14. The Lord Of The Rings trilogy, directed by Jackson, has made almost $3 billion in worldwide box office. Read More »

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R.I.P. Mike Hopkins

By | Monday December 31, 2012 @ 12:08am PST

Oscar-winning sound editor Mike Hopkins drowned in an accident while he and friends were rafting in the Tararua Range in northern New Zealand. Hopkins, 53, was found dead by a helicoptor rescue team after an inflatable … Read More »

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Warner Bros Sued For $80M By J.R.R Tolkien Estate & Publisher

By | Monday November 19, 2012 @ 7:07pm PST

The estate of Lord Of The Rings author J.R.R Tolkien went after Warner Bros today in an $80 million lawsuit over online slot machines and other digital merchandising. In the complaint (read it here), the Tolkien Estate Ltd, its trustees and News Corp-owned publisher HarperCollins have charged the studio, its New Line subsidiary and The Saul Zaentz Company’s Middle-earth Enterprises division with copyright infringement and breach of contract. It’s not the hugely successful movies they’re fighting over this time. Now its merchandising that the estate says was never anticipated as part of its original deal back in 1969. “The original contracting parties thus contemplated a limited grant of the right to sell consumer products of the type regularly merchandised at the time (such as figurines, tableware, stationery items, clothing and the like). They did not include any grant of exploitations such as electronic or digital rights, rights in media yet to be devised or other intangibles such as rights in services,” says the 26-page complaint. This legal move comes just under a month before the first movie in the Warner Bros-distributed and Peter Jackson-directed trilogy The Hobbit hits the big screen December 14. The Lord Of The Rings trilogy, directed by Jackson, has made almost $3 billion in worldwide box office. Read More »

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