The estate of Philip K. Dick has dropped the litigation against the producers of ‘The Adjustment Bureau’ after the judge tosses out part of the case.
The lawsuit filed against the film’s director George Nolfi and producers Media Rights Capital claimed that Dick’s estate was owed millions of dollars in royalties from the Matt Damon film based on Dick’s short story ‘The Adjustment Team’. Nolfi approached Dick’s estate back in 2001 to make the film. However, when the film finally was made a decade later, Nolfi gave the estate a mere $1.6 million and argued that nothing else was owed to Dick’s estate since the story on which the film is based had fallen into public domain.
The key argument in the subsequent lawsuit became whether the original story was public domain or not. The story was originally printed in 1954 in Orbit Science Fiction magazine. That date would make the story public domain now. However, Dick’s estate claims that the story was printed as a mistake since Dick never gave the rights to Orbit.
Yesterday, The Hollywood Reporter announced that Dick’s estate had dropped the lawsuit. The reasoning behind the dismissal was that portions of the case were tossed out on February 8, claiming that the court did not have jurisdiction over several of the case’s claims.
After the case was dropped, MRC issued a statement stating:
We could not be happier for our partner George Nolfi now that the lawsuit concerning The Adjustment Bureau, brought by the heirs of the Philip K. Dick estate, has been dismissed. George is not only a talented artist but an individual of the highest integrity and to claim or suggest otherwise is both offensive and completely unwarranted.
Of course this doesn’t mean the end of the legal battle. Justin Goldstein, the lawyer for Dick’s estate was quick to point out that “The judge’s ruling and our decision to dismiss the remaining portions of the federal case had nothing to do with the merits of any of the claims. The judge only concluded that state court is the appropriate venue for the dispute.”
So, Dick’s estate may still refile a new lawsuit at the state level and continue to try and claim the money that they still believe they are owed.