Miramax promises great vengeance on Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Pulp Fiction’ NFTs
Last year, Quentin Tarantino announced plans to hop on the NFT bandwagon and sell seven “exclusive scenes” from his Pulp Fiction screenplay. The NFTs will be digital copies of his handwritten original scripts with audio commentary, and are planned to go on sale next week.
But Miramax isn’t happy. It claims that Tarantino doesn’t have the rights to the Pulp Fiction script, promising dire consequences for the filmmaker if this sale goes ahead. They’ve already started legal action, but a new ominously-worded letter from Miramax’s lawyer Bart H. Williams to the company running the auction sets out their position:
“Whatever limited rights Mr. Tarantino has to screenplay publication, they do not permit the minting of unique NFTs associated with Miramax’s intellectual property, and his contrary position is the subject of a pending lawsuit … What your press release calls Mr. Tarantino’s ‘never-before-seen handwritten screenplay’ cannot yet be ‘iconic; or a ‘fan favorite,’ so it is transparent that you and Mr. Tarantino are trying to capitalize on Miramax’s content, intellectual property rights, and brand.”
“Assuming that you (like Mr. Tarantino) plan on going forward with the auction, please be on notice that you are doing so at your own risk, including the risk that you will later owe the proceeds of any sales to Miramax along with other potential damages. We would hope that you also inform prospective purchasers of the risks of purchasing these unauthorized NFTs, including that purchasers may have to return the NFTs to Miramax and forfeit the price they paid for such NFTs, and that purchasers may incur additional liability in the event they later sell the unauthorized NFTs (including the potential for statutory damages).”
Tarantino’s lawyer Bryan Freedman disagrees, responding that
“Quentin Tarantino’s contract is clear: he has the right to sell NFTs of his hand-written script for Pulp Fiction and this ham-fisted attempt to prevent him from doing so will fail.”
This will all come to a head soon as the first Pulp Fiction NFT auctions are scheduled to begin on January 17, with others to follow up until January 27. This means the course of action will be decided before the first court date on February 24, so if Miramax really is in the right on this, Tarantino risks exposing himself to heavy financial penalties.
Here’s hoping the NFT fad ends, but with more corporations clambering aboard every day, it seems the ship will continue to sail on for some time yet.