I’ll be perfectly honest here, when I first heard that they were making a movie out of the Watchmen, one of the most influential comics created, I was a bit disappointed. One because I had read through the whole thing and the ultra dark depressing storyline wore on me after awhile so I knew the movie would be just as heavy. Also because there were such great and memorable characters that I had a feeling we’d lose some of that on the way to the big screen. It appears just getting the rights to the comic has been a struggle, after a federal judge ruled on Wednesday that Fox actually owns the distribution rights to the graphic novel that was created by Alan Moore, and that extends to the big screen debut of the film slated to be released from Warner Brothers in March.
The producer Lawrence Gordon had a right to acquire the studio’s remaining interest in Watchmen, but that was apparently never exercised. The rights go as far back as 1994, and that gives Fox the rights under the original agreement. It actually goes back even further than that when Fox paid more than $1 million in the late eighties developing the project, and it went through a slew of studios then. Universal..to Paramount…to Warner Brothers and Legendary Pictures….just wow!
So what’s that mean exactly for the future of the film? No one is entirely sure at this stage of the game.. While Fox has won, the results of that ruling have not yet been decided. It’s widely expected that we’ll see a more detailed ruling in the near future. The movie itself is due to be released in March of 2009, and I’m sure we’ll find out before the official release.
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