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Mad Max's George Miller Is Taking Warner Bros. to Court

14 November 2017

The Syndey Morning Herald reports that Miller has filed the lawsuit against the studio over the alleged bonus that is owed to his production company Kennedy Miller Mitchell. Warner Bros. made a deal with Ratpac Entertainment - a company co-owned by Brett Ratner and at the time, future Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin - allegedly without extending an offer to Miller's company.

"Simply put, we are owed substantial earnings for diligent and painstaking work which spanned over 10 years in development of the script and preparation and three years in production of the movie", Miller's production company, Kennedy Miller Mitchell, said. While the movie wasn't a worldwide blockbuster in the vein of Disney's Star Wars movies, it still earned $379 million off a $150 million budget, per Box Office Mojo.

The disagreement lies in the fact that when the film was signed on it was agreed that Kennedy Miller Mitchell would receive a $US7 million bonus if the film's final cost was less than $157 million.

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If you've been wondering - like us - why hasn't George Miller kicked off production on that long-awaited sequel to Mad Max: Fury Road, here's as good an explanation as any. Even more, if Warner Bros. chose to co-finance the picture, Kennedy Miller Mitchell would be given the first opportunity to participate.

Warner Bros. argues that the dispute should be handled in arbitration in California. Miller is the one who helped turn Fury Road into one of the most memorable films of the 21st century.

Warner Bros attempted to get the suit, launched without fanfare in September, moved out of Australia, but the Aussie Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the case will be litigated Down Under.

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It won six Academy Awards and was an instant favourite with audiences and critics, so why hasn't "Mad Max: Fury Road" had any sequels?

For the studio's part, its response was the standard statement: "We disagree and will vigorously defend against these claims". The studio insists that the agreement stated Miller and company would only get their bonus if the film came in under budget. [But the production company] claims [Warner Bros] made a series of decisions which caused substantial changes and delays to Mad Max, which led to additional costs and expenses and that [the studio] wrongly took them into account in its over-budget calculation.

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