Clive Cussler and one of the "Cusslermen"
This lawsuit has been going back and forth since the movie came out, and it looks like the final verdict is merely for legal fees and "costs."
It all started when Cussler sued Crusader because they didn't give him final approval of the "Sahara" script. He told fans to boycott the film out of spite. The film then hemorrhaged money and lost millions, going down as one of Hollywood's biggest disasters.
Crusader then countersued Cussler, claiming that Cussler lied that people liked his book in the first place, that he grossly inflated sales figures, and that he conned Crusader into taking on the beloved "Dirk Pitt" franchise, even though the only people who have ever read a "Dirk Pitt" book are janitors in youth hostels who found ratty copies in the left-behind backpacks of junkies, tried to use them to prop up the legs of wobbly furniture, read fifty pages because the cover was shiny like a wasp, and then slowly rolled joints from the rest over the course of a year, accidentally reading a sentence here and there.
I actually saw this movie, "Sahara." I was working at this coffee shop in Austin and sleeping on the couch there at night because I didn't have enough money for rent. After my shift some nights, these two sisters who came in all the time would invite me back to their place next door to watch movies stolen from my boss's DVD collection.
One of these movies was "Sahara." To promote the film, Matthew McConaughey traveled the country in an airstream trailer personally telling every person in the country to go see it. He probably also ordered hundreds of copies of the DVD and left them in strategic places around Austin so that he could build a cult following and generate a hunger for sequels.
"This is terrible," I said, after watching five minutes of this movie.
"I read the book," said one of the sisters.
"Was the book terrible?"
"It was Clive Cussler," she said, shrugging.
"Why do the people in this movie keep talking to each other as if we know who they are and as if we have shared many adventures with them in the past?" I asked. "No one could stand ten minutes with these smug, inhuman idiots."
The insufferable heroes of "Sahara" have no flaws. They just have guns. Consider the worlds most famous action/adventure heroes: Indiana Jones is a cocky coward, James Bond is a lonely sociopath, Sherlock Holmes is a drug addict, Rocky Balboa is mentally retarded. Flaws! Make you care!
Also, stories about genius white men setting things right in the third world by blowing shit up and shooting people may not be what people want anymore.
"I don't know," she said. "It's just a movie."
"It's a BAD movie."
We all agreed about this. I suspected, however, that the book was also bad.
Can you imagine spending $160 million dollars on something? What would you buy? Would you give 3200 people 50 grand so that they could take two years off from work?
Or would you make a bad movie based on a bad book and then sue the writer of the book because you didn't make as much money as you thought you would and because the writer was delusional about the strength of their art?
Note: not only do fiction writers receive no credit if a movie based on their work succeeds, they are also blamed if it fails. WRITERS IN HOLLYWOOD: you are in an abusive relationship! You did not trip and fall into a doorknob! You do not deserve the treatment that you get because you are "dirty" or because you "dress so slutty!"
Call a hotline.
Get to a halfway house.
Posted by miracle on Sun, 15 Mar 2009 14:05:58 -0400 -- permanent link