Friday, December 08, 2006
"Sahara" The Lawsuit
You may have already forgotten about "Sahara," the 2005 action flick starring Matthew McConaughey as Dirk Pitt, with Penelope Cruz as the love interest (right before she wisely decided to skedaddle back to Spain and Almodovar). It grossed $121 million worldwide, which doesn't sound too bad until you realize it cost about $130 million to $145 million. The author of the Dirk Pitt books, Clive Cussler, is suing everyone involved because the movie was so bad. He had an extraordinary amount of input and this LA Times story about the saga of making the film is far more entertaining than most movies. I was especially astonished by the constant stream of writers being paid to punch up the script and the tons of money they got: figures like $700,000 and $500,000 and $250,000 and $600,000 and on and on keep appearing. Who says screenwriters get no respect? But I'm confused that they link producer Philip Anschutz to "The Chronicles Of Naria," since that was a Walden Media/Disney film and he's not listed in the credits that I see. But one thing I know: any producer who gives that much control to a neophyte author deserves what he gets.