While many people were happy to hear Monday that a prestigious Martin Luther King movie was in the works, two of the civil rights leader's children weren't so pleased. Martin Luther King III and Bernice King claim that their brother, Dexter King, sold their father's life rights without consulting them.
Bernice told the AP:
This is a deal that Mr. Spielberg and his people ... have entered into believing that they have the blessing of The King Estate. They don't have the blessings of Bernice and Martin King.
This isn't exactly new behavior for Dexter, his siblings claim. There was an earlier deal with EMI Music Publishing for $800,000 that Bernice and Martin didn't agree with, but as Dexter is the manager of their father's estate, they've little recourse to stop him. Bernice told the AP that Dexter and his business partner, an intellectual property guy named Madison "Phil" Jones, are only looking out for themselves. "This is about Dexter and Phil and their empire." And there was that tasteless incident in which Dexter, over the objections of Bernice and Martin, demanded more than $800,000 to license King's likeness for a memorial planned for Washington, D.C.
It's hard to argue that a biopic should wait for everyone who knew Dr. King to be happy, all at once, with the movie, but c'mon guys, let's at least try to make all of kids happy, huh?