I've always thought that the $64,000 question in the movie business is who's to blame when you make a flop? Ropes of Silicon reported that the author of the best-selling Dirk Pitt adventure novel Sahara, Clive Cussler, has decided to place the blame squarely on the producers.

Sahara starred the permanently mellow Matthew McConaughey as Pitt and Penélope Cruz as possibly the most glamorous UN investigator in history. Budgeted at $145 million, the film failed to ignite the franchise that everyone was hoping for. Cussler is suing the producer Philip Anschutz (and his company Crusader Entertainment) for violating his rights of approval over the script and other elements of the film. Anschutz is counter-suing, claiming that Cussler bad-mouthed the film in the press and made racial slurs during production (Cussler denied these allegations).

Jury selection is already underway and the trial is expected to begin later this week. An article in the LA Times back in December quoted Cussler as saying "They deceived me right from the beginning. They kept lying to me ... and I just got fed up with it." Between the thousands of pages of emails, memos, and affidavits that allegedly show the production spiraling out of control and a witness list that includes McConaughey and the film's director Breck Eisner; it looks like there's going to be plenty of blame to go around.
categories Cinematical