Tarantino vs. Gawker Media Group: Court Lacks Jurisdiction Over Cayman Islands Corporation
Published on February 21, 2014 · Filed Under Uncategorized
(NEW YORK) Major-league crybaby Quentin Tarantino has decided to sue the pants off Gawker, claiming that they ruined his movie by posting links to the script online. Gawker responded with a simple “cool bro, we’re located in the Cayman Islands so … good luck.” The original Gawker post can be found here.
According to a motion filed, Quentin Tarantino learned that Gawker Media Group is not subject to the jurisdiction of the State court becuase it is a Cayman Islands corporation with no ‘systematic contacts’ with California. Photo Tarantino in February 2009 at the Berlin Film Festival. Photo by Siebbi (original), Gryllida (cropped) Licensing: This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 / Wikimedia Commons.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the motion states “This Court lacks personal jurisdiction over [Gawker Media Group, Inc.], a Cayman Islands corporation which is not subject to general jurisdiction because it does not have any continuous and systematic contacts with California and is not subject to specific jurisdiction because it does not publish the website at issue in plaintiff’s Complaint and was not involved in any way with the researching, writing, editing, or publishing of the article that is the subject of plaintiff’s Complaint.”
Tarantino shelved the project in late-January, saying “I’m very, very depressed. I finished a script, a first draft, and I didn’t mean to shoot it until next winter, a year from now. I gave it to six people, and apparently it’s gotten out today.”
“I gave it to one of the producers on Django Unchained, Reggie Hudlin, and he let an agent come to his house and read it,” Tarantino said at the time. “That’s a betrayal, but not crippling because the agent didn’t end up with the script. There is an ugly maliciousness to the rest of it. I gave it to three actors: Michael Madsen, Bruce Dern, Tim Roth. The one I know didn’t do this is Tim Roth. One of the others let their agent read it, and that agent has now passed it on to everyone in Hollywood. I don’t know how these f***ing agents work, but I’m not making this next. I’m going to publish it, and that’s it for now. I give it out to six people, and if I can’t trust them to that degree, then I have no desire to make it. I’ll publish it. I’m done. I’ll move on to the next thing. I’ve got 10 more where that came from.”
It’s interesting to note that Beejoli Shah, once employed by Gawker to run the Defamer vertical (the one that broke the Tarantino script), had a late-night “tryst” (polite euphemism) with Tarantino, which she chronicled here.
The Hollywood Reporter speculates that this isn’t exactly the end of the dispute, however; Nick Denton’s power-move of placing Gawker assets in the Cayman Islands certainly throws a wrench into the mix. I say hurray for Denton, boo-hoo for QT.