Licht suit tattoos 'Inkheart'

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Producer Andy Licht is suing New Line and author Cornelia Funke, claiming that he first submitted a manuscript of the book "Inkheart" for consideration as a feature film but was elbowed aside when the movie was greenlighted.

New Line recently wrapped production on the Iain Softley-directed film, a children's fantasy starring Brendan Fraser and Helen Mirren. Based on a book that's part of a Funke-penned children's trilogy, the film is set for distribution in spring 2008.

In a suit filed Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court, Licht said his Licht Entertainment was in line to produce such a picture since 2003 and that Funke and New Line recently removed him from the project. The suit seeks unspecified monetary damages and a halt to releasing the movie "without including appropriate film credits in favor of plaintiffs."

Licht's producing credits include "The Cable Guy" and "Waterworld."

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