We were almost there -- the filmmaker had been in talks to finally get the movie finished -- but now that dream has come to an end, and it's moving to new hands.
The Hollywood Reporter posts that O. Russell has ended his involvement with the production after negotiating to finally finish the film. Here's where things get interesting: The director was talking with Ron Tutor, the man getting ready to buy Miramax from Disney. If you've followed his Hollywood trajectory, he was working with David Bergstein, the head of Pegasus Studios, which included Capitol Films and THINKFilm -- the studios making Nailed. After all of the monetary mess, Tutor distanced himself from Bergstein and started discussions with O. Russell to finally get through the remaining scenes and finish the film. The talks broke down, and the filmmaker says:
Financier Tutor, meanwhile, said:This has been a painful process for me. The multiple production delays and stoppages, which were caused by David Bergstein and preceded Ron Tutor's direct involvement with me, have now spanned two years, and the circumstances under which the film would now be completed are much different on several fundamental levels than when we embarked several years ago. I, unfortunately, am no longer involved in the project and cannot call it 'my' film. I wish Ron Tutor well.
It sounds like an unfortunate turn of events, but there's a little more to it. The "others" who Tutor blames for the failed agreement are producers Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher. In a statement issued today, they said: "We have been informed that we will be unable to stay involved with the movie Nailed unless we agree to make concessions that are unfair, unprofessional, and detrimental to the movie." Sources say those concessions are cutting their fees in half.Russell conducted himself like a perfect gentleman. I understood his position. It really didn't have anything to do with him but with others, and we just reached a point where I couldn't do what he wanted. But it was a decent negotiation between the two of us. No lawyers. No idle threats, just two people trying to clean something up, and we couldn't get there. It was surprising and disappointing, but I understood.
It certainly seems unfair to be asked to halve your pay by a man whose previous partner had a myriad of shut-downs because no one was getting paid by the company. Now Tutor is looking to find a new director and get Biel and Tracy Morgan back for the required reshoots. With that, we might just see some actors get brassed off at the new Hollywood player as well. He says their contract allows for free reshoots.
But me, I'm out. Nailed isn't Nailed without David O. Russell.