On Monday we brought you the news that producer Bob Farnsworth, Star Partners and Hummingbird Prods were getting together to make It’s a Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story, a movie about an angel showing George Bailey’s horrible grandkid that the world would be better of if he’d never been born.
Today we bring you the news that Paramount Pictures is like “Naw, brah. Naw.”
See, Paramount also were apparently staring at their screens in confusion on Monday, and opened their office door to shout down to the legal department: “Hey we still have the rights to It’s a Wonderful Life, one of the most beloved Christmas movies of all time despite how little it has to do with Christmas, because we bought the company that made it and all of their assets in 1998 and we haven’t, like, gotten black out drunk and sold it?” And their legal department was like “Yup. I mean, yeah, we still have all the right to It’s a Wonderful Life, and probably also the short story it was based on, The Greatest Gift.”
“Right,” said Paramount, and released a statement:
No project relating to It’s a Wonderful Life can proceed without a license from Paramount. To date, these individuals have not obtained any of the necessary rights, and we would take all appropriate steps to protect those rights.
Bob Farnsworth, producer on The Rest of the Story, responded:
We have spent a lot of time, money and research that leads us to believe that we are clear on any infractions of the copyright. If anyone feels that have a legal claim, we will be happy to talk with them. I believe that whatever resolution needs to be made will be made amicably, in the positive spirit of the project.
Translation: we’re pretty sure we found a loophole but just in case we haven’t, if you get nasty we’re going to plug our ears and call you a Mister Potter. In the positive spirit of a project in which a representative of god tells some jerk that the world would be better off without if he’d never existed.