Gregg Allman Takes Legal Action to Stop ‘Midnight Rider’ Film
Last week, we reported that Gregg Allman had issued a public plea to director Randall Miller to stop production of his biopic film ‘Midnight Rider.’ It now appears as though Allman has taken things a step further, filing a lawsuit to halt production on the film once and for all.
The Hollywood Reporter notes that Allman’s suit alleges that Unclaimed Freight Productions, the company in charge of making ‘Midnight Rider,’ was due to start principal photography on the film no later than Feb. 28, 2014. Allman states that the tragic Feb. 20 train accident, which took the life of camera assistant Sarah Jones and injured several others, was part of the pre-production stage of the film.
Furthermore, Allman says that Unclaimed Freight Productions has not fully paid for the rights to the film. He claims that the producers wired all but $9,000 of the money, and the checks sent to cover the balance were returned and never repaid.
“Therefore,” the complaint states. “Allman requests that the Court enter an Order declaring that the Defendants’ Option has expired and directing the Defendants to cease all efforts to make a motion picture based upon the life of Gregg Allman and/or his autobiography.”
A May 12 hearing will consider whether to place a temporary restraining order on production, which may prove to the final straw for the troubled film.
In addition to the industry calling for a boycott of the film, actor William Hurt, slated to star as Allman in the film, dropped out of the role as the result of the accident. In an email message that was picked up by the L.A. Times, Hurt had taken issue with the stunt that led to the death of Jones:
“I said, ‘Sixty seconds is not enough time to get us off this bridge.’ There was a communal pause. No one backed me up. Then, we…just went ahead. I took off my shoes, got on the heavy, metal hospital bed and began preparing.” Adding, “We didn’t have sixty seconds. We had less than thirty,” Hurt said, referring to the amount of time they had to get out of harm’s way.