What was planned to be a video game adaptation of the recent film War for the Planet of the Apes has turned lawsuit according to The Hollywood Reporter.
A complaint filed in California states that China-based developer Suzhou Snail Digital Technology agreed to pay Fox Entertainment $2.5 million in advance (plus any royalties from the product) for the rights to develop and release games based on the film that released in July. In return, Fox agreed to also provide valuable assets and material from the film, which Snail Digital claims was not done in a timely manner.
Although Snail Digital received an early version of the War for the Planet of the Apes script, Snail claims to have not gotten much else even though it was repeatedly requested. In addition, when an alpha version of the game was provided to Fox for approval, the company was critical of certain aspects without any suggestions as to how those aspects may be remedied. The complaint notes that one character “looked too much like a character from Pirates of the Caribbean,” but that Fox was not forthcoming with additional details.
The games planned by Snail Digital were to be an action role-playing game, as well as an augmented reality title. However, Snail Games later abandoned the AR title after China’s ban on such games following the Pokémon Go mania that had ensued.
Now, Snail Digital is suing Fox to receive a rescission of its contract plus damages as it sees appropriate timing for its game’s release to be long past as a result of Fox’s uncooperative behavior.
“Were the Games to be released months, or even weeks after the film, the zeitgeist ‘buzz’ surrounding the Motion Picture would have died down and the Games may struggle to be relevant, let alone marketable. That is why, on information and belief, film-based video games generally are released prior to or concurrently with the films upon which they are based. This is not only the industry standard, it is common sense.”