Producers’ Lawsuit Might Kill “Machete Kills”

Amber Heard and Danny Trejo

Robert Rodriguez’ Machete Kills has hit a huge bump in the road. Overnight Productions has filed a $2 million lawsuit against Rodriguez’ Quick Draw Productions and asking it wants to cut all ties with the Texan filmmaker. According to Overnight, Quick Draw has been dishonest about Texas tax credits and budget information.  The company is also looking to terminate an earlier agreement that granted Rodriguez rights to make another movie about the iconic character played by Danny Trejo.  Should Overnight Productions be successful in its lawsuit, the Machete sequel rights will revert to Rick Schwartz’s Overnight.

Machete Kills is now wrapped, and Open Road has picked it up for 2013 release. But Overnight says they haven’t been provided with key materials, including paperwork on the budget of the movie and tax credit info, and they’re seeking $2 million in damages.

And then there is the matter of Schwartz’s fee. “Defendants have also failed and refused to provide the required budget information to Overnight Productions so that it can determine the producer fee owed with respect to the sequel”. The plaintiffs estimate that they are owed in excess of $250,000 in this aspect of their legal action. Overnight Productions has been involved in the making of films such as 2008’s The Lucky Ones and 2010′s Darren Aronofsky-directed Black Swan.

If Rodriguez loses Machete Kills, it puts in danger the possibility of ever seeing Trejo’s iconic character in a sequel ever again.

Now, is Machete Kills really in danger of being shelved? We doubt it. Producers like to make money and a movie sitting in a closet is lost income. Something tells us a settlement will probably make this thing go away and all will be fine in the end.

Machete Kills stars Danny Trejo, Jessica Alba, Michelle Rodriguez, Charlie Sheen, Sofia Vergara, Amber Heard, Mel Gibson and Lady Gaga.

The sequel is the second in what it is supposed to be a trilogy, according to director Rodriguez. Machete Kills is expected to be released in the spring of 2013. Overnight Productions and Machete’s Chop Shop are represented by Jeffrey Spitz of Los Angeles’ firm Lerman Pointer & Spitz.

Filmmakers: Robert RodriguezDirector / Producer, Álvaro RodríguezWriter (characters), Kyle WardWriter (screenplay), Sergei BespalovProducer, Aaron KaufmanProducer, Iliana NikolicProducer, Alexander RodnyanskyProducer, Rick SchwartzProducer, Steve Joyner.

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Elia Esparza is a leading expert in communications and journalism targeting the burgeoning Hispanic market and has produced and written dozens of articles. President and CEO of Always Evolving PR and a Communications Specialist, Elia, incorporates her 18 years experience in the areas of entertainment and education public relations, and marketing. promotions, market research and translations (Eng/Span).