Tuesday, February 04, 2003
Orson Welles' daughter looking for Kane and Ambersons film rights.
Beatrice Welles is seeking a ruling on an agreement she said her father signed, giving him the rights to the landmark 1941 movie.
Ms Welles is suing in a case being heard at the US district court in San Francisco. [...]
Ms Welles said her father entered into a contract in 1939 to write, produce and star in Citizen Kane and his 1942 movie The Magnificent Ambersons.
According to the lawsuit, a later agreement made between Welles and RKO in 1944 terminated the earlier contract and restored the copyrights to Welles.
Ms Welles wants the court to rule on which of the contracts applies.
She contends that if the 1944 agreement stands, her father's heirs own the rights to both movies.
However, if the earlier contract is in force the family is contractually entitled to 20% of the films' profits, the lawsuit claims.
In this instance, it argues, the defendants have failed to pay royalties.
I'd like to say "good on her" for doing this, but something smells fishy about it. Both of those films are over 60 years old now. Haven't we been taking our time to make our move? Why didn't you do this when Daddy was still with us, Beatrice? Might've made those last years of his that bit more comfortable...