Update (November 17): Quentin Tarantino’s attorney, Bryan Freedman, has issued the following statement on Miramax’s lawsuit against him: “Miramax is wrong – plain and simple. Quentin Tarantino’s contract is clear: he has the right to sell NFTs of his hand-written script for Pulp Fiction and this ham-fisted attempt to prevent him from doing so will fail. But Miramax’s callous decision to disclose confidential information about its filmmakers’ contracts and compensation will irreparably tarnish its reputation long after this case is dismissed.”
Earlier (November 16): Miramax has filed a lawsuit against Quentin Tarantino over an NFT project involving “Pulp Fiction.” The Oscar winner announced at the start of November that he was putting seven uncut scenes from “Pulp Fiction” up for auction as Secret NFTs on OpenSea, the world’s largest NFT marketplace. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Miramax sent a cease-and-desist letter to Tarantino after the announcement but the NFT project persisted. Now the studio alleges the NFT project violates their intellectual property agreement.
“Tarantino’s conduct has forced Miramax to bring this lawsuit against a valued collaborator in order to enforce, preserve, and protect its contractual and intellectual property rights relating to one of Miramax’s most iconic and valuable film properties,” Miramax wrote in its lawsuit. “Left unchecked, Tarantino’s conduct could mislead others into believing Miramax is involved in his venture. And it could also mislead others into believing they have the rights to pursue similar deals or offerings, when in fact Miramax holds the rights needed to develop, market, and sell NFTs relating to its deep film library.”
In a statement earlier this month, Tarantino said he was “excited to be presenting these exclusive scenes from ‘Pulp Fiction’ to fans.” The project announcement added the “secret content [up for auction] is one-of-a-kind, has never been seen or heard before, and will include the uncut first handwritten scripts of ‘Pulp Fiction’ and exclusive custom commentary from Tarantino, revealing secrets about the film and its creator.”
As reported by The Hollywood Reporter: “According to a copy of Tarantino’s contract with Miramax for ‘Pulp Fiction,’ the director retained some rights to the film, including ‘soundtrack album, music publishing, live performance, print publication (including, without limitation, screenplay publication, making of books, comic books and novelization, in audio and electronic formats as well, as applicable), interactive media, theatrical and television sequel and remake rights, and television series and spinoff rights.”
Tarantino’s attorney responded to Miramax’s accusation by claiming Tarantino is acting in his “Reserved Right” in regards to “screenplay publication.” But Miramax’s attorney responded: “This group chose to recklessly, greedily, and intentionally disregard the agreement that Quentin signed instead of following the clear legal and ethical approach of simply communicating with Miramax about his proposed ideas. This one-off effort devalues the NFT rights to ‘Pulp Fiction,’ which Miramax intends to maximize through a strategic, comprehensive approach. Miramax will defend all of its rights in regard to its library, including rights relating to NFTs, and will not allow Quentin’s representatives to deceive others into believing they have the authority to make similar deals in violation of the rights agreements they signed.”