Original ‘Blair Witch Project’ stars demand more compensation from Lionsgate

Next article

Actors from ‘The Blair Witch Project’ are seeking damages from Lionsgate

What’s the story

Heather Donahue, Joshua Leonard and Michael Williams: the protagonists of the iconic horror film The Blair Witch Projecthave publicly called on Lionsgate for higher pay for their roles in the 1999 blockbuster.

The trio expressed their desire to be actively involved in any future Blair Witch projects that use their names or images.

The request comes ten days after Lionsgate and Blumhouse announced plans to revive the franchise with a new film.

Lionsgate acquired the ‘Blair Witch’ rights through Artisan Entertainment

Lionsgate, which did not produce or distribute the original The Blair Witch Projectacquired the rights to the franchise through its 2003 purchase of independent film distributor Artisan Entertainment.

Note that the actors filed a lawsuit against Artisan Entertainment in 2002 over the unauthorized use of their names and likenesses in the studio’s 2000 sequel, Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2.

Furthermore, Lionsgate’s first attempt to revive the franchise was with the 2016 sequel, which grossed $45 million worldwide.

‘It’s 25 years of disrespect’: Leonard expressed his dissatisfaction

Meanwhile, the recent announcement by Lionsgate and Blumhouse has prompted a strong response from Leonard on social media.

Expressing his displeasure, he said: “Right now, it’s 25 years of disrespect from the people who have pocketed the lion’s share (pun intended) of the profits from OUR work, and it feels both annoying and classless.”

He revealed that each actor received $300,000 from a buyout of their ownership points for the film.

The original film grossed $248 million worldwide.

‘Blair Witch’ Actors Demanded ‘Remaining Payments’, ‘Consultation Rights’

In their latest statement, Leonard, Williams and Donahue (now known as Rei Hance) urged Lionsgate to provide them with retroactive and future residual payments “equal to the amount that would have been allocated through SAG-AFTRA if we had a good union had. or legal representation when the film was made.”

They also demanded ‘meaningful consultation on any future’ Blair Witch reboot, sequel, prequel, toy, game, ride, escape room”, where their names or likenesses may be used for promotional purposes.

Actors introduced ‘Blair Witch Grant’ to aspiring filmmakers

The actors also suggested that Lionsgate establish a $60,000 “Blair Witch Grant”, which would be awarded to “an unknown/aspiring genre filmmaker to assist in the making of their first feature film.”

A Lionsgate representative declined to comment on these claims.

Meanwhile, directors Eduardo Sanchez and Dan Myrick and producers Gregg Hale and Robin Cowie are present The Blair Witch Projectexpressed their support for the actors in a separate statement.