Judge rules Fox owns distrib rights to “Watchmen”

Variety reports that, in a surprise ruling on Christmas Eve, a judge has ruled that 20th Century Fox owns the distribution rights to the film version of WATCHMEN. The decision comes as a blow to Warner Brothers, which has produced the WATCHMEN movie and plans to release it on March 6. A week earlier, Judge Gary Allen Feess had set a January 20 start date for a trial; after the new ruling, he suggested that the two studios would better spend their time negotiating a settlement rather than prepping for the trial.

Fox, which optioned the graphic novel by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons in the 1980s, claims their rights to the project were never bought out by producer Lawrence Gordon, who sold the property to Universal, from which it bounced to Paramount and then Warner Brothers, which finally produced the movie, directed by Zack Snyder (300).

About the Author

Steve Biodrowski

Cinefantastique's Los Angeles Correspondent from 1987 to 1993 and West Coast Editor from 1993 to 1999. Currently the webmaster of Cinefantastique Online, I also run a website called Hollywood Gothique that covers Halloween Horror and Sci-Fi Cinema Events in the Los Angeles area.

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