Fox Wins 'Watchmen' Case
Studio gets distribution rights back from Warner Bros.
A federal judge ruled Wednesday that Fox owns the distribution rights to the graphic novel by Alan Moore, and that extends to the big screen debut of the film that was slated to be released from Warner Bros in March.
Fox filed suit in February, stating producer Lawrence Gordon's option to acquire the studio's remaining interest in "Watchmen" was never exercised -- giving Fox rights under a 1994 agreement. Fox originally acquired the rights to "Watchmen" in the late 1980s and spent more than $1 million developing the project, which later went to Universal and then Paramount before landing at Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures. Kinda like a duck-duck-goose, isn't it?
A more detailed ruling is expected soon. The ruling has not stopped Warner Bros from backing off on its planned release date of March 6 for the film starring Patrick Wilson, who was last seen in "Lakeview Terrace" and Jackie Earle Haley, who was last seen in "Semi-Pro" this year.