I’ve been passively interested in Three Stories About Joan, which was to be directed by and star Bruce Willis. One thing you want to do when producing a movie like that: have your money together when you say you’ve got your money together.
Otherwise, you end up in a situation like that facing the Joan production: Willis quit as director at the end of last month, was sued on February 27 for breach of contract to the tune of $4m, and has now counter-sued the film’s producers (25 parties, in total) for $8.7m.
Willis alleges that the producers had promised a commitment letter confirming $20m in financing and that his fees would be held in escrow prior to filming, and furthermore that producer Moshe Diamont admitted before cameras rolled that the financing was not in place.
Reps for Willis say the suit against him has no merit.
It’s hard to imagine the film surviving this series of setbacks. It would have featured Camilla Belle, Kieran Culkin and Own Wilson alongside Willis. What I’m curious about is the fate of the Willis Brothers production shingle, formed this year between Willis, his brother David and producer Stephen Eads. I can’t find any list of all the parties Willis is suing, but the following line is in the wire stories about the case, implying that his own shingle isn’t among them. Which is, y’know, good. For him. “He claims that along with him, producers Stephen Eads and David Willis and many members of the cast and crew had spent more than five weeks working on pre-production at that point.”
Behind every great book adaptation is a forgettable first try. — By Ryan Covey