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Netflix sues Relativity Media over contract breach

Netflix subscribers in Texas may be interested to learn that the streaming giant has filed a lawsuit against Relativity Media, alleging that the studio breached an exclusivity contract when some of its content landed on competing streaming services. Relativity is currently going through bankruptcy proceedings in New York.

According to the complaint, Netflix paid $9.6 million for exclusive rights to stream the films "Beyond the Lights," "The Lazarus Effect" and "The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death." It also paid $2.9 million to stream the movies "And So It Goes" and "Hector and the Search for Happiness." However, competitors Amazon and Starz also ended up landing rights to the films.

Relativity insists that the other streaming networks were given access to the films inadvertently. However, Netflix argues the studio actually lost its rights to the films through foreclosure. It further alleges that Relativity attempted to hide the foreclosure to prevent it from taking legal action. As a result, Netflix seeks a refund of the $11.9 million it paid for exclusive streaming rights to the films. It also claims Relativity owed it a total of eight films in 2017 and seeks to collect $5 million for each film the studio failed to deliver. Relativity emerged from bankruptcy in 2016, but it is once again seeking protection from its creditors.

Individuals and businesses facing contract disputes may seek the advice of an attorney. An attorney may be able to suggest ways to resolve the issue without litigation, such as through mediation or arbitration. If litigation is necessary, legal counsel might represent a client's interests throughout court proceedings and work to obtain a favorable outcome.

Source: Deadline, "Netflix Seeks Millions In Damages From Relativity Media For Breach Of Contract," Dawn Chmielewski, June 1, 2018

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