Judge Will Decide Jan 20th If Watchmen Can Be Released

The drama surrounding the Watchmen movie is getting ready to hit it’s climax. As some of you may not know, Fox studios has taken legal action against Warner Bros to prevent WB from releasing the movie. The reason… WB made the movie they didn’t own all the rights too… turns out Fox owned the right (all or in part) and never gave their consent for WB to proceed with making the movie. Fox tried to communicate with WB about it, but apparently WB just ignored them until the movie was done and Fox had to go to court with it.

Recently the Judge ruled that Fox did indeed own rights in Watchmen. Now, WB and Fox have agreed to bypass the jury and allow for the judge in the matter to make a ruling on if Watchmen can be released in theaters or not March 6th. It doesn’t look good at the moment.

The judge is set to rule on the matter on January 20th. On that day, we’ll know if the Watchmen will or will not be released in theaters March 6th or not. This could take a while.

And once again, let me remind everyone that this is WB’s fault. Fox owned the rights. WB didn’t do enough due diligence to make sure they were allowed to make the film. Fox tried to talk to them about it but WB blew them off. Now we’re in this mess.

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42 thoughts on “Judge Will Decide Jan 20th If Watchmen Can Be Released

  1. Hey John, thanks again for replying!

    I’ve just read your recent report on the “Watchman” issue and I must admit it proves your point! So sad that I must admit this, but, you’re right, Fox is blameless in this situation. Oh well, I hope WB learned something from all this. Thanks again for all your responses from this debate they were truly informative. Score one for you!

  2. Hey John, again thanks for your reply!

    Clearly you have more information then I do, but I can’t understand why they waited so long until the eve of relelease to bring about this lawsuit. I completely understand thier right to sue and I agree with it. What I disagree with is the timing of this lawsuit, especially considering how quick a studio usually files a lawsuit at property and copyright offenders.
    That’s what myself and a lot of other people are mad at Fox for, not for the lawsuit itself but for the timing. Again you have more information than I but do you truly believe it appropiate for Fox to file this lawsuit now, on the eve of release, instead of say 6-8 months earlier when (or if) they had the opprotunity?

  3. Hmm, I tend to agree. This reminds me of the time in high school when I had a band.

    One day I got an email from someone who had already trademarked the band name and told us to cease and desist using the name immediately or suit would be brought against us. We didn’t check with P&T before we named our band, but I suppose that was our mistake.

    Especially with something like a major motion picture where millions upon millions of dollars are at stake, you’d think WB would take the time to do a little research.

  4. Hey Safichan,

    I read the letter earlier. You do realize it’s written by a completely biased individual who stands to make a fortune if the film gets released and stands to lose a fortune if it doesn’t.

    Also, the point of his letter is totally irrelevant. All the letter points out is that Fox wasn’t interested in MAKING the movie. But that point isn’t relevant in the least. The point is… the rights belonged to Fox. It’s their right to make or not make anything that belongs to them.

    So we’re left with my original point. This mess is WB’s fault. If they had done the proper work in the first place to ensure they had the RIGHT to make the movie, none of this would be happening right now.

    Fox is doing nothing but enforcing their legal rights which they are legally obligated to do. Period. End of discussion.

  5. ive tried sending her emails asking her to marry me or kill him hust as you suggested

    and the watchmen trailer (japanese) says 3/28 at the end…so they already moved the date

  6. aaron
    youre right, ive been sayign this for years…i hate the guy

    chris martin is the luckiest son of a bitch alive.

  7. You know…I actually hope the judge is a fan of Watchmen. Maybe he’s one of those hardcore fans and he’ll let them release it…or even better make them release it SOONER…eh? EH?

  8. FKN JUDGE!!!

    :P

    Damn it I hope this film gets released sooner rather than later!! I really really want to see it so bad my private parts hurt…

    …not really…but they should.

  9. Hey Seth Rex,

    I just do. Can’t say anymore than that. You can choose to believe me or not believe me as you see fit. But my record shows I have no love for Fox… all I can tell you is what I know.

  10. Hey CrimsonId,

    It’s ok for you to “suspect” shenanigans… but I know for a fact that Fox had communicated with WB well in advance and WB rejected them.

    There is no way around this. Fox has acted totally appropriately (I don’t even like Fox) and WB is to blame. No two ways about this.

  11. I’m just mad at Fox cause they generally suck lately.

    I wouldn’t be near as mad at them about this if they didn’t ruin Xmen and Fantastic Four. I know I’m being completely illogical but sometimes I feel logic is overrated.

  12. Hey John

    Thanks for responding! Granted, I have no expeience in legal affairs like you have, but I just find it incredibly hard to believe that in the 2 years that this film was in production, Fox continually asked WB for compensation for rights and the WB would continually blowing them off until right at the edge of release Fox throws it’s hands in the air and says “Fine, we’ll see you in court!” I and many others strongly suspect shenanigans were at play here on the side of Fox. No studio would just constantly ask another studio for 2 years to pay for rights before bringing a lawsuit. Likely, A studio would ask just ONCE (If that) before slapping a lawsuit on the other. I’m simply basing this on the numerous other times someone has infringed on a studio’s property or copyright and how fast that studio responded with a lawsuit. Sorry this is so long winded, but I just find the idea that Fox did ALL it could for 2 years to get mean ol’ WB’s attention before finally filing a lawsuit a bit suspect.

  13. IF, and that’s a big IF, the arm chopping scene and the dog-splitting scene are BOTH in the final cut, then the movie will be an overwhelming success. The rest is disposable. Forget the multilayered interwoven plots, the stories within stories, a fictional universe with a rich backstory, and the social commentary…. that’s all just fluff.

    As everyone who knows all the Veidt lines would know, Watchmen, at its heart, at its very core is a story of bisected dogs and the one armed men who love them. Snyder knows this, that’s why he put the arm chopping scene in when it didn’t exist in the book. He wanted to make sure the casual viewer picked up the essence of the story. If people don’t get that, then the whole thing is an effort in futility.

    That’s why I know this movie will RAWK!

  14. I saw a preview for this somewhere several months ago. This movie looks so sick! It’d be a shame if it never got released. So ridiculous that stuff like this happens. What would WB have to do if they go through with the release – pay royalties to Fox on every movie ticket and every DVD sold?

  15. My favourite bit is how he reads a load of stupid-ass, vaudeville type schtick and then goes, “Are you serious?”

    Don’t ever change, Hazmat. You’re the sweetest orchid in the ornamental pond just the way you are.

    But for fun, let’s have an MTV-style quick cut montage of Hazmat’s impressive, cred-concreting, senses-shattering Adrian Veidt dialog memorization, his failure to grasp…well, anything, and just this uncut gem from the Hallowed House of Hazmat: “im not the one having a bitch fit over someone else getting the chopped off scene right “NO he didn’t chop him in half!!! he split their heads!”” top marks all round.

    AND THEY CALL ME MR. TIBBS!

  16. wow. please reread my 2 comments and then read your comments. and let that “i wish i could go back in time so i wouldn’t have typed that and looked like a total idiot” feeling sink in…

    and dont give me the whole “watchmen off” shit…i know every line by Ozymandias (my fave character) and im not the one having a bitch fit over someone else getting the chopped off scene right “NO he didn’t chop him in half!!! he split their heads!” dude.are you fucking serious?

  17. “so how exactly did i exaggerate? all of these things do happen and i didn’t exaggerate”

    Also, you missed a cheap snicker by not phrasing this: “I’ve said a million times that I don’t exaggerate”
    This is how it is in Obama’s America, is it? Come back, Coolidge, all is forgiven.

  18. Oho, it’s like that, is it? A Watchmen-off!

    Rorschach doesn’t slice the dogs in half, he splits their heads with a cleaver. Although the idea of him throwing first the front end of the dog, then its ass through the window at Gerald Grice is a startler. While not near mint, the dogs certainly are still one entity apeiece unto themselves.
    There’s your exaggeration.

    Nowhere in the Graphic Novel does Rorschach chop anyone’s arm off.
    He does, however, cut someone’s tie off with scissors then run around honking a car horn. There’s your imaginary bit. Whether it happened in some putz’s fever dream or vision quest concerning the movie is irrelevant.
    Also, why would they put that on a trailer.

    As for your final questions, well, like someone else said, possibly not about this subject but maybe it was, back in the day, that it’s a shame that t3h kewl vio-lence, canine bisection and Rorschach making sure that someone will never be able to play air guitar again convincingly was all you got out of the multi-layered narrative of Watchmen, to the point of it being the projected highlight of the movie. That’s where that comes in.

    You’re right, though, I should re-read Watchmen. Twenty-two years I’ve had that book now. Why, I’ve got socks older than that! And I’m wearing them now, but on my bloody stump. I knew I shouldn’t have asked Rorschach for an autograph. But at least they’re thermal.

    And now, good day to you, sir. I said, good day!

  19. Dogsplittah!
    alright pal;

    torture scene:
    in the novel rorschach tortures people in bars to get info by breaking their fingers

    dog gets sliced in half
    sorry, he sliced TWO dogs and threw them at their owner BEFORE burning the house while hes tied inside the house

    jail scene
    he kills several with a toilet and electrocutes many with toilet water

    chops arm off
    a guy watched a screening of watchmen and said it was not only the best comic book movie ever, but said rorschach cuts someones arm off. i HAVE the link. people were getting pissed that he was talking about the movie after the screening

    so how exactly did i exaggerate? all of these things do happen and i didn’t exaggerate

    so im guessing its you that needs to read it again, since you dont remember the most memorable parts from the story (dog being split in half by an axe)

    i have a few questions, just to make sure youre not talking out of your ass;
    1) how am i faux edgy?
    2) how did you conclude i want to be “badass?”

    im sure these answers will be accurate and not based on my “i like the watchmen trailer” comment

  20. I will either be really pissed or really happy on Jan. 20th. I wish WB would just give their freaking money over so us fans could get the movie we have wanted for years! But they are not likely to do it……….

  21. Hazmat, you are a faux-edgy, pitiful wannabe badass who has also apparently made up or exaggerated several scenes from Watchmen. Ask your carer to read it again to you.

  22. Hey CrimsonId

    The thing you’re forgetting is that Fox tried to get Warner to talk and stop a long time ago. A lawsuit should be the LAST thing you do once all other options run out.

    Fox, as hard as it is to hear this, acted totally properly.

  23. Well, I certainly hope something can be worked out between the two companies. However, while I agree it’s WB’s fault I think it is still a dick move by Fox to wait for this movie to be complete before bringing this lawsuit about. That’s what a lot of people are pissed at Fox about, (which you failed to acknowledge in your last podcast). Using your example if robber broke into my house and stole my toys, yes I would sue them. BUT, say I were to sit there and wait for months on end until Christmas day. Then right as the robber is letting his family open his presents, I burst through the doors with the police arrest the robber, confiscate all the toys from his family, all on Christmas day instead of months earlier when I had plenty of opprotunity. I can tell you now, it wouldn’t matter how much in the legal right I am, I would be seen as a tremendous dick to a lot of people. That’s why people are mad at Fox, not because they own the rights but they purpously waited until the last minute to file this lawsuit in the hopes of getting a “Free” movie.
    Where as if they had filed earlier, production on this film would likely have stopped, and they would have gotten their rights but no movie.

  24. I just read the graphic novel the other day for the first time. I found it pretty awesome reading and picking out the scenes in the trailer directly following the scenes in the novel. It got me more excited to see it. I have avoided anything but the trailers in regard to the movie as to not spoil anything for myself, but I heard the ending is different which I can live with.

    Personally I think they should be allowed to release on time. It won’t change the outcome, WB is going to owe Fox a lot of money one way or the other. See how much money it makes, could help determine how much WB should pay.

    As far as Fox not being to blame, I think it is a mixture of both studios fault. Ya WB infringed on Fox’s property, but it seems like Fox could of stepped up and got some law suits rolling long before the movie got made. Why didn’t Fox stop production before production even got started with a lawsuit or something? Sure it takes a while for the court to get the ball rolling, but it takes a while to get a movie filming too.

    Just read Wanted as well the other day, another cool graphic novel I might say. At the same time, damn am I glad they changed up the story for the movie. That book was pretty gnarly. Some of the stuff would have been really hard to depict without the movie getting an NC-17 rating, and other parts were so crazy people might have just found it to weird.

    In the end, liked both the movie and graphic novel for Wanted. Hopefully on March 6th I will be able to say the same for Watchmen.

  25. you know what im REALLY glad about? none of the trailers have shown any good rorschach scenes…like the torture scenes or the slicing dogs in half parts or the whole choping a guys arm off scene…and dotn get me started with the jail escape.
    its just cool that theyre leaving all that for the movie..usually movies give too much stuff away in trailers

  26. Ironically, I think only verdict that would not cause more legal problems is if they did stop the movie’s release and relinquished all profits to Fox, as terrible as it sounds.

    Unless both studios reach an agreement, WB winning this case or getting any court-ordered profit could result in a LOT more copyright infringement cases down the road when studios realize there are new loopholes to take advantage of. And chances are that neither WB nor Fox want to share.

  27. who cares? i’m interested in watching the movie whether it comes out or not, the only time i’ve invested in this movie is the amount of times that i’ve watched the trailers.

    if the movie comes out, great, if it doesn’t, hey i saved myself some money… it’s just a movie. why would i care who owns it? this doesn’t effect me. the only thing i care about regarding this movie, is when it shows (if it does) and if its any good.

  28. I’m content rereading Watchmen on March 6th. My expectations for the movie were already low, and yet the Japanese trailer managed to make them even lower.

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