A few months back filmmaker Kevin Smith announced plans to develop a TV series based on the eccentric 1984 sci-fi feature “The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension”. Smith went as far as mapping out at least two seasons of the show.
That all went up in smoke today as Smith has dropped out of the project because of a lawsuit filed by MGM against the original film’s writer Earl Mac Rauch and director W.D. Richter. THR broke the news this morning that MGM launched the lawsuit in order to claim the rights so Smith could officially go through with his series.
Upon learning that was happening in the trade report, Smith subsequently dropped out of the project and in a lengthy Facebook video post spoke about why he dropped out:
“My point is that I’m not going to court. I love the people at MGM. They’ve treated me insanely well all across this project with real credibility and stuff like that, like they thought I could do this show, even when I didn’t think I could. And the folks at Amazon have been lovely as well, but you gotta remember, there’s no production yet, no script has been turned in, I haven’t been paid a dime, no money has been really spent.
So, it’s not like we’re going to upend a lot of things, like this legal thing came out of nowhere. I did not know about this. I called up my agent and was like, ‘What the f–k is this?’…. I’m no longer involved. I don’t wish anybody harm; I wish all parties well. I hope these dudes come to an agreement, and if they do and they still want me involved down the road, I’ll be here. But why would they?”
With Smith gone, is MGM still interested in pursuing the series? Looks like the immediate future of this project will be playing out in court.