Aramid wins injunction halting film auction

'Black Water Transit' part of David Bergstein's assets

A day after a local bankruptcy court put David Bergstein's main movie companies under the control of a trustee, another federal court in Los Angeles granted Aramid Entertainment Fund an injunction to stop another entity controlled by Bergstein and his show business partner Ronald Tutor from auctioning off the movie "Black Water Transit."

The U.S. District Court of California issued an order Wednesday for a temporary restraining order to stop TFC Library from selling rights to the crime drama, which stars Laurence Fishburne, Brittany Snow, Stephen Dorff and Aisha Tyler and was directed by Tony Kaye.

Noting that Bergstein's attorneys Tuesday told a bankruptcy judge that a key part of his business is foreclosing on distressed film libraries, Aramid managing director David Molner said, "It would seem the courts are disrupting that business model."

Based on the novel by Carsten Stroud, the movie was long in development and went through several cast changes before it was produced on location in New Orleans early in 2009. Capitol Films financed the $23 million movie and made foreign sales on it.

After it was edited by Kaye, Bergstein apparently was unhappy with what he saw and deemed it unreleasable. Bergstein took legal action against the competition bond company, which settled with him.

The movie was also the subject of a lawsuit in 2008 brought by Ascendant Pictures and its principal Chris Roberts, who charged Bergstein forced him out of the project and did not pay him a producing fee. That suit was settled in January.

According to the TRO filing, the sale was planned for April 1.

An attorney for Bergstein and Tutor did not respond to a call for comment.