Category: Julie Taymor

Julie Taymor claims 'Spider-Man' producers engaged in fraud

March 2, 2012 |  5:32 pm

Julie Taymor
The most exciting thing about Broadway's "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" has been the legal battle taking place off stage. On Friday, lawyers for Julie Taymor, the ousted director of the mega-musical, fired the latest salvo in the ongoing fight, filing papers in a federal court in response to a countersuit from the show's producers.

Taymor's lawyers claim in the document that producers "fraudulently induced" her to continue working on the musical even though they were "secretly conspiring to oust Taymor and use and change her work without pay."

The papers also state that Taymor was fired in an attempt to blame the musical's problems on her, as well as for financial reasons.

The 46-page document, obtained by The Times, was filed Friday in a New York court. [Updated: Friday, 6:15 p.m.] A lawyer representing "Spider-Man" producers said in a statement that it is "very disheartening for the former director of the show to take no responsibility for the consequences of her actions while, at the same time, trying to claim credit for the show's success."

In Friday's filing, Taymor's lawyers addressed the existence of "Plan X," which they say was a plan to make changes to the musical without Taymor's knowledge during the show's preview period.

They claim that co-writer Glen Berger and set designer George Tsypin developed the plan in secret and reached out to producers Michael Cohl and Jeremiah Harris, as well as Bono and the Edge, who wrote the score for the musical. (Tsypin had been a longtime collaborator and friend of Taymor.)

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'Spider-Man' producers countersue Julie Taymor [Updated]

January 17, 2012 |  2:44 pm

Taymor

The fight between Julie Taymor and the producers of "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" is getting uglier. On Tuesday, producers said they have filed a countersuit in federal court against the director, accusing her of failing to fulfill her contractual obligations on the Broadway musical.

The producers said in a release that Taymor refused on a number of occasions to collaborate on changes to the show with other members of the production team. "The show is a success despite Taymor, not because of her," said the claim.

Last year, Taymor sued the producers, claiming that her creative rights were violated and that she wasn't compensated for her work. Taymor was fired as director of the musical in March following scathing reviews and a number of technical mishaps during the show's preview period.

Taymor was replaced by Philip William McKinley in the director's seat. The book for the musical, which Taymor wrote with Glen Berger, received an overhaul by playwright Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, who worked with Berger. The revised musical officially opened in New York in June.

Producers are claiming that the delays and increased expenses were due to Taymor. They also claim that Taymor's suit is "baseless" and that the current version of the show is significantly different from her version. The countersuit is being filed against Taymor and her company, LOH.

[Updated at 3:21 p.m.]: A lawyer representing Taymor issued the following statement on Tuesday:

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Monster Mash: Ovation Award winners; new (old) ending for 'Porgy'

November 15, 2011 |  7:40 am


http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/.a/6a00d8341c630a53ef015393105a9c970b-piStanding O's: Troubadour Theater Company, Rogue Machine  and "Leap of Faith" were among the  winners at Monday's Ovation Awards ceremony, presented by LA Stage Alliance for excellence during the 2010-11 season. (Los Angeles Times)

Going back: A planned revisionist happy ending in the coming Broadway production of “The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess” has been dropped. (New York Times)

Her turn: Julie Taymor has a few things to say about Bono and the Edge's public comments about her and the pre-overhaul version of "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark." (Esquire)

Eleventh hour: Chinese officials take issue with the methods by which artist Ai Wei Wei is trying to pay the tax-related fines they say he owes. (The Guardian)

Defections: Prima ballerina Natalia Osipova and principal dancer Ivan Vasiliev are leaving the Bolshoi Ballet to work with the Mikhailovsky Theatre's new artistic director, Nacho Duato. (The Guardian)

Staying put: Only a handful of the exhibitions in the Getty-sponsored Pacific Standard Time initiative of postwar California art will go on to other institutions. (Los Angeles Times)

Music mania: Banda musicians -- Mexican brass bands that play at parties and nightclubs -- are experiencing Southern California's "tuba revolution." (Los Angeles Times)

Mark your 2012 calendars: "Smash," NBC's eagerly awaited series about the birth of a (fictitious) Broadway musical based on the life of Marilyn Monroe, will premiere Feb. 6. (BroadwayWorld.com)

Singing their praises: Two Americans were among the winners of Abbey Road Studios' international  Anthem Competition. (Abbey Road)

Summing up: LACMA releases attendance figures for its popular "Tim Burton" exhibition, saying it was the fifth most popular show in the museum's history. (Los Angeles Times)

Hanging around: A long-lost Victorian painting by William Powell Frith that hung in a family's New England beach house for half a century could fetch $800,000, Christie's said Tuesday. (Associated Press)

Another take: The nation's Manhattan-based premiere financial newspaper attends the MOCA-Marina Abramovic gala and offers its view of the proceedings. (Wall Street Journal)

Quick change: The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra's chief executive resigned abpruptly Monday, with a replacement named the same day. (Pittsburgh Tribune Review)

Also in the Los Angeles Times: Mark Swed reviews the New West Symphony and Rick Ginell reviews of Los Angeles Master Chorale.

-- Kelly Scott and Sherry Stern

Photo: Raul Esparza won a best actor Ovation playing a preacher in "Leap of Faith" at the Ahmanson Theatre. Credit: Craig Schwartz / Center Theatre Group/Associated Press

'Spider-Man' producers respond to Taymor suit

November 8, 2011 |  4:12 pm

"Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark"
Michael Cohl and Jeremiah J. Harris issued a statement Tuesday afternoon responding to Julie Taymor's suit over her role in the troubled but popular Broadway musical "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark."

Taymor, who was fired from the musical last March during a protracted preview period, sued the show's producers Tuesday, claiming her creative rights were violated and that she wasn't compensated for her work. The lawsuit, filed in federal court in New York, states that she is entitled to profits from the show as it was largely her creation, according to the Associated Press.

"Since Ms. Taymor's departure in March, we have repeatedly tried to resolve these issues," Cohl and Harris' statement said. "The production has indeed compensated Ms. Taymor for her contribution as a co-book writer. Fortunately, the court system will provide, once and for all, an opportunity to resolve these issues. We look forward to a resolution in which everyone is properly compensated for their contribution to "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.' "

Taymor, who worked for years with U2 musicians the Edge and Bono and co-writer Glen Berger to create the show's music and book, was replaced by Philip William McKinley. Bono and the Edge stayed with the production to revamp their songs, while playwright Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa came in to help revise the book.

RELATED:

Julie Taymor sues producers of 'Spider-Man' musical

Spidey's raw deal: Julie Taymor, Peter Brook and Merce

Julie Taymor talks about Spider-Man to TCG

-- Kelly Scott and John Horn

Photo: Reeve Carney as Spider-Man in the Broadway musical. Credit: Jacob Cohl

Julie Taymor sues producers of 'Spider-Man' musical

November 8, 2011 |  3:08 pm

Julie Taymor

Director Julie Taymor, who was fired as the creative leader of the troubled musical "Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark," has sued the show's producers, claiming her creative rights were violated and that she wasn't compensated for her work.

Taymor, who directed the global theatrical blockbuster adaptation of "The Lion King," said in the lawsuit, filed Tuesday in federal court in New York, that she was entitled to profits from the show as it was largely her creation, according to the Associated Press.

Patrick Page, left, and Reeve Carney in a scene from "Spider-Man Turn off the Dark"Update: Later on Tuesday producers Michael Cohl and Jeremiah J. Harris issued a statement  responding. Read about it here.

Taymor, who worked for years with U2 musicians the Edge and Bono and co-writer Glen Berger to create the show's music and book, was shown the door in March and replaced by Philip William McKinley, whose only other Broadway credit was the 2003 musical "The Boy From Oz," which starred Hugh Jackman.

Bono and the Edge stayed on with the production to revamp their songs, while playwright Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa came in  to help revise the book.

"Spider-Man," which began preview performances last Nov. 28 in New York, was plagued by production delays, cast injuries and a spiraling budget that, at $75 million,  made it the most expensive show in Broadway history. The rebooted version under McKinley's guidance was not well-received by critics, but the show has generated steady ticket sales.

The Stage Director and Choreographers' Society previously filed a claim against the producers, alleging that Taymor was owed royalties. This week's lawsuit follows a decision by the administrators of the Tony Awards  that only Taymor is eligible for the show's best direction of a musical category.

RELATED:

Spidey's raw deal: Julie Taymor, Peter Brook and Merce

Julie Taymor talks about Spider-Man to TCG

'Law and Order' episode feels the pain of 'Spider-Man'

-- John Horn

Photos, from top: Julie Taymor (second from right) with her "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" collaborators (from left) the Edge, Bono and co-writer Glen Berger. Credit: Joan Marcus

Patrick Page, left, and Reeve Carney in a scene from "Spider-Man Turn off the Dark." Credit: Jacob Cohl

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