5:41pm PT by Ashley Cullins
Relativity Sues Former Co-President for Unfair Competition
Relativity is suing a former executive who launched a legal battle against the company earlier this year, claiming that after Adam Fields was fired he lied about representing the company to tank a potential distribution deal.
Fields in January sued Relativity, claiming he was defrauded into taking his job. He described the company as dysfunctional and likened it to "the cantina scene in Star Wars." The former co-president of production was ousted in September 2016 for breach of contract.
Relativity on Thursday sued Fields for trade libel, interference with prospective economic relations and common law unfair competition.
The distributor claims that after Fields was fired, he falsely represented to a producer that he had the exclusive right to negotiate on behalf of Relativity. He then quoted terms that were egregiously uncompetitive, according to the complaint, and the producer took the film elsewhere.
Not realizing what had happened, an authorized Relativity representative contacted the producer with a distribution offer and was informed of Fields' activity. The producer said that were it not for Fields' misrepresentation, the film would have been distributed by Relativity — and the company claims both it and the producer would have made millions of dollars from the deal.
Fields' attorney Dale Kinsella has not yet replied to a request for comment on the lawsuit. Relativity is being represented by Neville Johnson.