Posts Tagged Legal
What’s The Verdict: FTC settles crowdfunding fraud with Erik Chevalier!
The big, bad Federal Trade Commission has settled its first case against a creator on the Kickstarter Project. Erik Chevalier and The Forking path, Co. jumpstarted a campaign to raise money for a fantasy board game called “The Doom that Came to Atlantic City.” Supposedly, Erik Chevalier raised about 4x his goal for the game, but used some of these funds for personal expenses including personal equipment, personal residence, etc. and we all know that’s not allowed!
Chevalier promised consumers that they would receive a copy of the game along with figurines if the campaign reached its funding goal of $35,000. He ended up raising over $120,000 from 1,246 backers. But then, in July 2013, he told his backers that the project had been cancelled. There had been previous issues regarding patents and overseas manufacturing, and consumers thought all was good until he told them it was not. Chevalier made a statement addressing the situation, “Every possible mistake was made, some due to my inexperience in board game publishing, others due to ego conflicts, legal issues and technical complications. I never set out to con anyone or to perpetrate a fraud but I did walk into a situation that was beyond my abilities and for that I’m deeply sorry.”
Backers were upset, Chevalier promised refunds which he of course couldn’t uphold, and the FTC began investigating. The FTC is pursuing him for violating a law on the dissemination of a false advertisement. Chevalier has neither confirmed nor denied allegations, but has given consent to a permanent injunction barring him from making misrepresentations about any crowdfunding campaign.
And that’s all she wrote. Stay tuned for more on What’s the Verdict!
Collective Bargaining Hollywood Style: Entourage stars Get $2mil each negotiating as one
After years of speculation and anticipation the HBO hit series Entourage will finally make it to the silver screen. Its long journey to the world’s movie theaters, as with most Hollywood big budget productions, was not without controversy and delay. In a recent article in the Hollywood Reporter, Kevin Dillon, who co-stars in the film said that discussion about a potential film had begun as early as 2008, the same year that HBO’s Sex and the City made its film debut. Much of the delay was due to writer and director, Doug Ellin’s inability to come up with a script and storyline for the feature. However, once the script was completed the film would be further delayed by marathon salary negotiations.
One of the project’s main stars, Jeremy Piven, who was the only established celebrity prior to the original show’s conception, received a salary that left the other actors feeling like they deserved more than originally offered. After negotiations were finally completed Piven walked away with a cool $5 million, and the film’s other stars, Adrian Gernier, Jerry Ferrera, and Kevin Dillon, each signed deals worth $2 million.
In his interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Grenier discusses how he, Ferrera, and Dillon negotiated as a single unit to get their final deal, “We recognized that we had more leverage when we were aligned.” The utilization of collective bargaining between the project’s stars and the studio is very interesting and could start a new trend in contract negotiations. Rather than negotiate separate deals and contracts it seems as though Gerneir, Ferrera, and Dillon opted to negotiate as a single unit. This allowed them to secure the same uniform deal of $2 million each, rather than have their agents and attorney’s negotiate several different deals for each star. This technique can prove to be a rather effective one for ensemble cast projects, where all the stars can work together to secure a favorable payout.
Stay tuned for more on What’s The Verdict!