George Miller is suing Warner Bros. for a $7 million bonus he argues that his company should have received during the filming of Mad Max: Fury Road, and now he’s won the right to litigate in Australia instead of the United States.
reports that Miller’s company is suing for a bonus they say their contract with Warner Bros. guaranteed them if production costs didn’t exceed $157 million. Per THR:
Miller is demanding payment, but by Warners’ calculation, the film went over budget. Miller rejects this proposition, blaming a series of decisions which he alleges caused substantial changes and delays to the film. He asserts that Warner Bros. shouldn’t take those costs into account. Plus, he is testing a provision under Australian consumer law for Warners’ alleged misleading and deceptive conduct in making a deal without informing Miller how added costs would factor into budget calculations.
On top of that, Miller’s company alleges that there was a clause in their contract that should have given them first dibs to match any co-financing agreement Warner made with another production company, like the one they just made with RatPac Entertainment, the company that was headed (at the time) by Brett Ratner and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, of all people. Miller’s company never received an offer.
Warner Bros. had tried to move the dispute into arbitration in California, arguing that was its standard operating procedure with A-list directors, but a court in New South Wales has rejected this claim. Miller’s company argued that they made this deal with Warner’s Australia affiliate, Warner Bros. Feature Productions Pty Ltd, which is based in Australia. The judge agreed, and the lawsuit will be settled on Miller’s home turf.