Still reeling from the shock of close friend and colleague Anthony Minghella's sudden death last Tuesday, Harvey Weinstein's hope for a quiet week around the office was vanquished late Friday as resistance mounted for two of his company's upcoming projects. And you have to know that when you've made enemies of groups as diverse as Bob Marley's family and Star Wars fanboys, things really aren't going your way.
First up was the Hollywood Reporter's scoop that Bob Marley's widow Rita, the executive producer and source memoirist for the Weinstein Company's forthcoming Marley biopic, opposes Weinstein's plan to fast-track the film for a late-2009 release date that would undercut the Martin Scorsese doc about Marley in the works for early 2010. But she already sold the rights, didn't she? Sure, but she didn't — and apparently isn't going to — license Marley's music without a waiting period (the music publisher wants five years) between projects.
The Weinsteins reportedly may take a deal where they agree to postpone their biopic for a cut of the Scorsese doc, but they only wish it could be that easy dealing with the outraged masses protesting Harvey's handling of the Star Wars-geek dramedy Fanboys. The story of a group of fans who travel cross-country to Skywalker Ranch to get their cancer-stricken friend a look at the franchise's Episode One, the film earned plaudits at limited festival screenings in 2007. Not good enough for Harvey, who recruited Little Nicky/Drillbit Taylor maestro Steven Brill to excise the cancer subplot and play up the laffs. The Fanboys community, which united online last month against "Darth Weinstein," has since scored some noteworthy press and will be picketing TWC/Dimension's Superhero Movie upon its release this Friday in L.A. and New York.
This new anti-Weinstein video says it all. Happy Monday, Harvey!
- Rights flap jamming Marley bio [Hollywood Reporter]