There’s nothing better than two movie studios fighting. Particularly when they do it in private. Remember Halo? That video game movie hyped to within an inch of its life by Microsoft and CAA, complete with an armored battalion of messengers carrying the scripts to the studios? That was supposed to be co-financed by Fox and Universal? That got dumped last October? Well, Universal and Fox are now battling over Halo‘s roughly $12 million in pre-production costs. I’m told the two studios are at an impasse over who pays what. (According to an impartial spource, while the money was being paid out, Fox chose to play a secondary role. But now Fox is balking at splitting the costs 50-50 and claiming Uni should have asked permission prior to forking over some of those expenses…) The end result is that Uni is itching to send Fox one of those “pay up or we’ll sue” letters. Of course, it doesn’t help that Universal recently hired two major Fox execs: first, Fox Animation prez Chris Meledandri, then Atomic vp Lawrence Grey. There’s also chatter that Fox is moving some movies onto Uni dates. Can’t we all just get along? Maybe not. Uni is privately saying, “F*** them.” And Fox is privately replying, “We’re making too much money on our movies to give a damn.” I say, let’s settle this by an extreme fighting match to determine who’s the bottom, and who’s the top.
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