It’s a sure bet that a movie such as The Hobbit is going to make some cash at the box office. The timing is right, the fanbase is massive and the right ingredients are all there for at least one big weekend splash into Scrooge McDuck levels of cash.
So what’s a low budget studio supposed to do? Why ape ‘em of course! Except this time, this mockbuster didn’t manage to cash in on some potential success.Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit will be the most precious film under that banner for the forseeable future at least, as a temporary restraining order was awarded to New Line Cinema, Warner Bros, MGM and producer Saul Zaentz against the Global Asylum flick Age of the Hobbits.
“There is substantial likelihood that consumers will be confused by Age Of Hobbits and mistakenly purchase the film intending to purchase The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey“, federal judge Philip Gutierrez said, while Deadline was in the audience.
Indeed, Plaintiffs have presented evidence that Asylum’s other films have caused confusion among consumers, who mistakenly purchase Asylum films intending to purchase a different film.
This wasn’t the first time that Global Asylum had their legal socks rocked, as earlier this year, Universal Pictures sued the studio over their film American Battleship , whoch just so happened to resemble their flick Battleship.
Warner Bros released the following statement earlier, regarding their court case victory:
This victory underscores the importance of protecting the unique work of our industry’s creative community from companies like Asylum, whose cynical business model is designed to profit from the work of others.
Their intent to create confusion in the marketplace on the eve of release of ‘The Hobbit,’ one of the most anticipated films of the year, has met with defeat.
And I’ve got to side with the big movie studios on this one. There’s a ton of work that goes into these massive blockbusters, and even if they aren’t successful, the crew, actors and everyone else involved do feel some sense of pride in the finished product.
And then you get something like Transmorphers, which most likely would even make Michael Bay explode in a sea of well-shot sparks and Aerosmith tunes.
Well done Hollywood.