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    • In 2015 Mad Max: Fury Road director George Miller delivered a movie that was a massive success with both critics and moviegoers. It won six Oscars and was nominated for four more, including Best Picture and Best Director.

      Miller has scripts for two sequels ready to go, but we may never get to see them because he's currently locked in a vicious court battle with the studio, Warner Bros, who Miller says violated contracts, misrepresented the cost of the movie, and failed to pay his production company its rightful share of the movie's earnings.

      While Disney has been churning out blockbuster franchises one after another, Fury Road was a rare hit for Warner Bros and could have jumpstarted a franchise they desperately need. Instead they seem determined to shoot themselves in the foot by alienating the person most responsible for its success.

      This isn't the first time Warner Bros has done this. Their subsidiary New Line Cinema spent years fighting with director Peter Jackson over profits from the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and more recently Warner Bros has been battling with the Tolkien estate over merchandising rights.

      What is Warner Bros thinking?

    • I don't know exactly why, but I love reading about the battles that go behind the studios funding movies. It can be tragic, like this case 👆appears to be, but almost always filled with incredible fear of failure and drama.

      The movies that almost never happened...where someone at the studio got fired for agreeing to make it (The Sixth Sense)...where the studio gave up on the filmmaker (Toy Story)...where the studio head tried his best to block the making of but previous contractual agreements forced his hand (Pirates of the Caribbean)...

    • I find it interesting too, but also — as a movie lover — immensely frustrating, because I want to see great movies, and battles like these prevent me from seeing great movies. 😢

    • This actually reminded me of a very relevant book I read long, long ago: Star Trek Movie Memories by William Shatner and Chris Kreski.

      It's a detailed look behind the scenes of the pre-production, production, and post-production on the first seven Star Trek movies. I think it'd be an interesting read even for movie buffs who aren't big Star Trek fans. It's amazing how difficult it was to get those movies made and how hard the studio (Paramount in this case) seemed to work at every step to shoot themselves in the foot even though they had one of the biggest franchises ever (at the time) in their hands.

      You'd think each successful Star Trek movie would have made the next one easier to get off the ground, but in most cases it only made the next one harder to make because the successes just attracted more interference from studio bigwigs.

      For example, after the successes of the first three Star Trek films, Paramount execs thought it would be a good idea for Star Trek IV to be an Eddie Murphy comedy vehicle (he had just had a big hit with Beverly Hills Cop, another Paramount movie, so obviously the logical next step was to put him in a Star Trek movie and sideline the established cast fans wanted to see).

      This very nearly resulted in a disaster that could have killed the franchise, but luckily Murphy pulled out at the last minute, the disastrous story was scrapped, and we ended up getting the most successful Star Trek movie of the 80s and the one many people regard as the best classic Star Trek movie (you guessed it: "the one with the whales").