Date: 18th July 2003

Exorcist lawsuit settled

The author of The Exorcist and the director of the 1973 horror film have settled a lawsuit against Warner Bros.
Warner Bros said the case, over profits from the movie's re-release, had now been now been settled, just as a the court case was due to begin.

It said that all claims against it had now been dismissed, although it would not discuss the terms of the settlement.

Author William Peter Blatty, who wrote the novel and the screenplay, and director William Friedkin, had claimed that Warner Bros had breached its fiduciary duty over the re-release of the film in 2000.

The pair said The Exorcist - The Version You've Never Seen was sold too cheaply to Warner Bros sister networks TNT and TVS, leaving little or no profit.

Friedkin committed several months to re-editing the film for its re-release, and both he and Blatty spent time promoting the movie.

The re-issued film grossed $39.7m (24.9m) in the US and $110m (69m) worldwide.

The deal for the original release gave Blatty a 39% share of the profits, while Friedkin was entitled to 10%.

The lawsuit had alleged that Warner Bros "has tried, in every possible way, to divert revenues from plaintiffs, to deprive them of the profit shares they were promised and to keep for themselves the economic benefits that should have accrued to plaintiffs".

Source: Press Release