Quentin Tarantino Slams Former Studio’s Pulp Fiction Lawsuit As Meritless

By Douglas Helm | 1 month ago

quentin tarantino

Another day, another lawsuit. Recently, Miramax, the studio that produced Pulp Fiction, filed a lawsuit against Quentin Tarantino. The suit was filed in response to Tarantino creating an NFT collection to sell based on Pulp Fiction screenplay scans. Tarantino’s lawyers, in response, have dubbed the lawsuit “offensively meritless.”

Yikes, so who’s in the right in this scenario? The courts will have to decide, but they’re definitely treading in murky waters here. As of now, NFTs don’t have a lot of precedent around them. If you aren’t familiar with NFTs, they stand for non-fungible tokens and they’re usually created on the Ethereum blockchain. In short, they’re tokens that are completely unique and if you buy one, you’re recorded as the owner on the blockchain. Think of it like buying a one-of-a-kind trading card, but in digital form. Now Quentin Tarantino has created a collection of Pulp Fiction-related NFTs to sell, and Miramax isn’t happy about it.

For Quentin Tarantino’s NFT collection, he plans on selling seven high-resolution scans of the original Pulp Fiction screenplay. Each NFT will come with a drawing inspired by whatever scene appears in the NFT. While this is surely something a fan would love to get their hands on, Miramax alleges that Tarantino doesn’t have the rights to sell the collection. They argue that his current contractual rights regarding the film don’t cover NFTs that involve the screenplay.

Quentin Tarantino and his lawyers, on the other hand, are arguing that he’s basically just publishing sections of his screenplay, which is within his rights. Miramax seems to want to block this sale for a number of reasons. Primarily, they don’t want a precedent set that others could use their film library in a similar way.

pulp fiction

Since NFTs are such a new concept, this lawsuit really could go in either direction. Depending on how relevant NFTs continue to be, this could be an important lawsuit for production companies and creators alike. Miramax is making the case that their contract regarding Quentin Tarantino’s rights to Pulp Fiction covers exceptions and new forms of media and that they have “broad” rights to the film. In response, Tarantino’s team is arguing that since he’s just publishing the sections of his screenplay, that Miramax has no case. They’ve been quick to allege that Miramax is using the general confusion about NFTs to try and exercise rights that they don’t actually have.

Since this is such a high-profile case and there doesn’t seem to be much love between the two parties, it seems unlikely that it will be settled out of court anytime soon. The tension plays a factor of course, but it’s also an important case overall to determine if artists will be able to use their work for NFTs or if production companies will hold the rights to anything NFT-related. All that’s left to do now is watch the case as it unfolds and see if Quentin Tarantino will be able to sell his NFT collection as planned.

As of this article’s writing, no hearing dates are set. District Judge Fernando M. Olguin will be presiding over the case. Quentin Tarantino is represented by Freedman & Taitelman LLP and Irell & Manella LLP. The lawsuit was filed by Miramax’s legal team on November 16, 2021.