Producers Clash Over Crash
Two rancorous lawsuits were filed in Los Angeles Wednesday by persons involved in the production of Crash, which is nominated in six Oscar categories, including best picture. One the the lawsuits was filed by Bob Yari, an independent film financier, who charged that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the Producers Guild of America unlawfully denied him a producer's credit on the movie, thereby preventing him from receiving "the ultimate professional acclaim, and the accompanying creative and economic benefits, to which his labors entitle him." Yari was reportedly the first person to agree to invest in Crash and to arrange other financing. Neither the academy or the Producers Guild would discuss the lawsuits. Separately Cathy Schulman and Tom Nunan, two of the producers of Crash, charged that Yari failed to pay them more than $2 million in fees connected with the movie. ""This action arises from the dark underbelly of Hollywood," their lawsuit said, "where an outsider, armed with enormous wealth from a career in another field, can insinuate himself into position to take recognition and money away from the people actually responsible for the creation and execution of profitable and award-winning entertainment content." Yari called the complaint "a shameful misrepresentation of the facts."