It's never fun when legal troubles stir up parts of the industry and this new occurrence involves a rather beloved property, namely Neon Genesis Evangelion, a.k.a. OMG TEH REI a.k.a. The Gainax Golden Goose. I'm sure that ADV Films and Gainax don't feel very much at all like Shinji and Asuka above (Sixteen Candles, how I miss thee).
Specifically, it involves a rights dispute dating back to when ADV acquired the rights to a raftload of potential live-action Evangelion projects including TV shows, direct-to-video productions, and most notably the big ol' live-action Evangelion movie (at least three of them!).
ADV claims that it paid grand monies to extend its acquisition, but that Gainax waffled on signing the paperwork, causing ADV to lose "a major studio opportunity for the Motion Picture Rights". ADV's asking the courts to confirm that ADV is indeed the rights owner as was agreed upon originally, which would put Gainax in breach of contract. For its part, Gainax claims that the extension was conditional, and that they had the right to veto the transaction, making ADV's acquisition (or the extension of such) void from the get-go.
Messy it is, but what does this mean for you, the potential viewer? Well, as late as last year producers were saying that plans for the Evangelion live-action film were still "very active". Was this the "major studio opportunity" ADV missed out on? Lawyers only know. Suffice it to say that the movie isn't dead yet, for better or worse.
I guess it can't be any worse than Rebuild, yeah? Well, actually, it could be a lot worse, but who knows, right?
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