Game on: Beyonce can’t quash $100M claim

Beyonce Knowles and video game developer Gate Five Studios have been dueling it out over the superstar’s failure to go through with a project to create an eponymous video game. Gate Five contends it suffered major damage, a sum it sets at $100 million, and the dispute has turned to litigation, filed in August, 2011. Courts have heard and denied defendant Knowles’ motion for summary judgment of this case. She has contested the ruling but an appellate court has affirmed the order denying the pop superstar’s motion. reports that Beyonce backed out of the deal to make the Superstar game, with Knowles defending herself with the claim that the project lacked proper financing. By pulling out of the $20-million video game deal, she might end up with that $100-million tab if the case proceeds to trial and she loses. And after her litigation losses to date, the cost to settle has increased. Video game studios like Gate Five hire a lot of employees to develop single projects. The website said Gate Five has demanded that Beyonce be held accountable for “a bad faith breach of contract so callous that, on what appeared to be a whim, she destroyed Gate Five’s business and drove 70 people into unemployment, the week before Christmas.” Knowles was still negotiating  until she had her lawyers pull out on Dec. 3, 2010, even as project financing reportedly was due to arrive six days after.

Beatty beats Tribune, keeps Dick Tracy stake

U.S. District Judge Dean D. Pregerson in Los Angeles has granted Warren Beatty’s motion for summary judgment, finding the actor had fulfilled an agreement with defendant Tribune Media Services and therefore retained rights to Dick Tracy, the long-running comic strip legend. Hard-hitting, fast-shooting and super sharp, the detective was created by Chester Gould and debuted as the protagonist of a cartoon strip on Oct. 4, 1931, in the now-defunct Detroit Mirror.


Hip-hop sample OK under complex Indian law


U.S. appellate court in Florida has upheld a lower court’s summary judgment for defendant Timberland, resolving an interesting legal question — not whether the music producer could sample a 1967 Bollywood tune for the rap “Put You on the Game,” but whether plaintiff Saregama India Ltd. owned that original tune’s copyright and had standing to litigate. To answer the question, the panel of judges reviewed “an Indian copyright statute from 1957, the types of customary agreements between film producers and musicians in the 1960s, and the specific contract between Saregama’s predecessor company and the producer of Aradhana,” the Bollywood movie from which the tune came.