Report: Godfather author's estate sues over game

Anthony Puzo takes Paramount Pictures to court for money earned off the mafia epic's EA-developed adaptation.

Electronic Arts has finally confirmed its second game based on The Godfather series of films, but there's a little unfinished business surrounding the first one. Reuters is reporting that Anthony Puzo, the son of The Godfather author Mario Puzo, is suing Paramount Pictures for a cut of the game's revenues.

Puzo is suing for at least $1 million, claiming that a 1992 agreement between his father and Paramount entitled the author (and now his estate, since the elder Puzo died in 1999) to a significant share of any audio-visual products based on or using elements of the famous trilogy of films.

Electronic Arts' first Godfather game was released on the Xbox, PlayStation 2, and PC in March of 2006. It was later adapted to the Xbox 360, the Wii, the PlayStation 3, and the PlayStation Portable, with a handful of changes made to each edition.

Paramount has yet to respond to the suit.

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89 comments
bibalan
bibalan

maybe in this game city isn't covered by papers...

necronaux
necronaux

"Dude", I agree that there's enough money to go around, and they should all know what side their bread is buttered on, share the wealth, so to speak. As to what I'm talking about, my point is that if your going to have a "contract" it needs to be specific. Not knowing what future technology brings, makes that specificty difficult. Several news reports list the wording of the contract as "Puzo... was to receive a "significant share in the revenue of audio-visual products... embodying elements of the Godfather pictures". What is "significant"? Depending on if your Puzo, Paramount, or EA you'll define it differently.

Maxor127
Maxor127

Dude what are you talking about? The Puzo estate has every right to sue. They had a contract and they're not getting paid. And they're only asking for $1 million. I'm surprised they're asking for so little. I don't know why you're assuming they got "something." That's why they're suing. They've gotten NOTHING. If they didn't have the foresight to get a contract, then I'd agree that they're just being greedy. I swear, sometimes I just want to go Jay and Silent Bob on people.

necronaux
necronaux

Greed seems to be driving everything. Sure, if you come up with an idea, you should get paid. Copyright it, and you should make a profit any time it's used. But, if you contract it out to other parties to use, any way they see fit, and they make a profit, any changes they make were not your idea. The Puzo Estate made a contract with Paramount that (in 1992) may or may not have foreseen this franchise expanding into video games. It's not EA's fault that they turned a profit for the then unseen 'future' visions of Puzo's original works (and I believe that they are getting paid 'something'). Although, as stated above, it seems to have included "any audio-visual products", I think that now they see how profitable it's been, they want to void their old agreement. (i.e. they want more money). How many times do we see this in today's world? Some athlete signs a contract, he and or the team do well, then the next season he refuses to attend training camp unless their contract is changed to give him more money (and the teams usually cave in)? Writers and actors signing contracts to perform at certain salaries, then because of new technology they didn't plan for or (contract for), decide to strike, not work, untill they get more money? So, back in the early 70's did was George Lucas a visonary (owning all franchise rights), or did he just get lucky?

StillWingless
StillWingless

I love it. Crappy game sells extremely well, and no one even thinks to give a cut of the profit to the guy who originally wrote the story, in spite of all connected rights and contracts. Brilliant, classic EA.

aygol
aygol

They deserve to get sued since they let the worst gaming company (EA) to make a crappy game out of one of the best movies of all time, and they only wanted the money, they didn't care about anything else.

cengi
cengi

I just don't care about all this

firebreathing
firebreathing

this is why you just make up your **** when it comes to games, too many other people want a cut despite the fact they didn't help make the game.

redskinStu
redskinStu

He's making EA an offer they can't refuse.

Lucavi_Zalera
Lucavi_Zalera

Mario Puzo never even liked the Godfather Series (it overshadowed what he considered his betters works) but he must be rolling in his grave seeing how worthless it has made his son. He gave his family the gift of the third Godfather, which Puzo's intent was to generate money for wife as he was nearing death. So after seeing this little stunt, I think Anthony Puzo needs to get a real job, and maybe read his father's works to see what a real man is.

mustained13
mustained13

Somebody's getting a severed horse head in their bed soon.

nickythenewt21
nickythenewt21

Anthony Puzo should be suing over this; he has the right to make money off of his father's work, especially because of the agreement made between them and Paramount. Anyways, read the book; it's magnificant. Then watch the movie; it's also magnificant.

irontigers
irontigers

i dont mean pour money, i mean like buying a game every couple of months, and if you dont have any EA games how come you are commenting about one of there games?

LURCH87
LURCH87

game isnt that good to sue over.8)

Karjah
Karjah

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

dragonsama
dragonsama

@ irontigers "although we all pour our money into the vaults of EA Games" Umm no we all don't. I have never bought any of EA's Garbage and I never will. I don't buy their games because I dislike the company and their practices. If more people boycotted EA we would see a very large change in the way they do business.

irontigers
irontigers

Good for him, although we all pour our money into the vaults of EA Games, Paramount Pictures and other big companies, I think its good that he takes a stand, like the Corleones!!! :)

des_kong
des_kong

EA is a lousy developer for this game. Hope Puzo win the law suits.

combatsoldier
combatsoldier

I just hope that nomatter what happens the outcome will be just and rendered swiftly.

zuec
zuec

Hope Puzo gets more than a million!! Think the film companies already make too much money! :-)

snarple_basic
snarple_basic

Hope he gets his cut, big companies are always trying to screw over the little guy.

usedtype
usedtype

It isn't Puzo vs. EA, it's Puzo vs. Paramount. Is it too hard to actually read the article, people? It sounds like Paramount was trying to screw the estate out of the money due them, so I hope they win. Either way, I think it will have no impact on the games.

JollyJake
JollyJake

I think a lot of people are responding positively for the individual because they hate EA.

combatsoldier
combatsoldier

I was reading your comments and it is a very touchy subject. so no disrespect to anyone but yes you should have a job and yes widows from soldiers lost in war should get money. Trust me I know........

Karmacodelc18
Karmacodelc18

What? Puzo didn't get a cut? Theres no way you should take that your old man was a genius! BLEED EM DRY ANT.

lanista
lanista

@VegetaMaelstrom "Intrakitt, I'm just curious here but do you disagree with widows recieving a pension because their husbands died in a war? Would you be opposed to them having that handed to them?" Yes, or put it another way. If I'm a parent and I want to work hard and save my money to ensure my family are okay after I'm dead and gone. Then why should all my money and assets be taken when I die? Surely it's up to me what I do with them, including me passing them on to my family.

Zoomer30
Zoomer30

Looks pretty cut and dried, they cover all the loopholes in those things. I bet there is a seciont on "Holographic versions of the movie" just in case :)

Chief_Kuuni
Chief_Kuuni

well if that's true, ea better pay up

Jedilink109
Jedilink109

Why would they just skip out on paying him?

VegetaMaelstrom
VegetaMaelstrom

Intrakitt, I'm just curious here but do you disagree with widows recieving a pension because their husbands died in a war? Would you be opposed to them having that handed to them?

excelR83
excelR83

Legally he is entitled to this, this is nothing out of the ordinary. I do think it's strange that he waited so long to file a suit though. He should have contacted them ages ago. Then again, maybe he did.

Intrakitt
Intrakitt

Anyone who thinks Anthony should get money because of what his DAD did is pretty much missing the point of life...You have to work, you're supposed to. You shouldn't have EVERYTHING handed to you...

catsimboy
catsimboy

That's a pretty unsubstantial amount for such a large studio like Paramount but they're still probably going to fight the suit tooth and nail so as not to set a precedent for future lawsuits.

itwiz90
itwiz90

Pay the man or I'll send my cousin Tony "The Iceman" to pay you a visit.

kia_9
kia_9

i actualy think anthony should recieve at least some money since his father did create 'the godfather'

1313deadmandrve
1313deadmandrve

I loved the first Godfather move, but I never finished watching the second one (movie). I liked the Godfather for Wii, but nothing else. I hope they make some changes to the PSP version. I think that Puzo is also overreacting. HE didn't make it, his father did.

dagger77
dagger77

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

crunchb3rry
crunchb3rry

"I had heard that Francis Ford Coppola gave his blessing to the video games" It was quite the opposite. He hated the game.

syafiqjabar
syafiqjabar

Godfather II (movie) is as awesome, if not more so, than the first. We'll see about the game. And yes, it's a suit against Paramount, not EA. The Puzo estate should get the money, anyway. The game is based on Mario Puzo's book. Don't see why not. Then again, maybe they won't get much because I heard he game did not do well.

dlgood
dlgood

Everybody who thinks this suit is against EA, please read again. It's against Paramount. EA licensed the rights from Paramount and would seem to be in the clear.

markdzebissov
markdzebissov

Good luck with the Godfather 2, the second and third films aren't all that great. The Godfather: Part II is arguably better than the first. The third one is definitely a disappointment.

DVS23
DVS23

does 1 million seem insignificant to anyone else? it's like this guy is just trying to fack around, he could have definitely held out for more

Kazona
Kazona

If he's entitled to it, he's entitled to it. Simple as that.

ocdog45
ocdog45

its always about money. the game will be a renter anyway.

GoldenRamoth
GoldenRamoth

well, I for one think this is a law suit that actually makes sense. It's not over demanding like some of the others, and it's not overly stupid either. (like suing Micky D's for getting burnt on coffee) It's for real legal reasons, and like I said before, it's not for an exorbitant amount. So go Puzo. Oh, and to help clarify the "OMG! ONLY $1 MILLION?" thing, $1 million is not very much for the gaming business, considering how much money is made there, especially for EA, and yes, it is a lot for your average worker. It's all relative. So this law suit is good for Puzo, and won't really hurt EA, just annoy them if it's won. (or even if it's lost)

LinconSixEcho
LinconSixEcho

I had heard that Francis Ford Coppola gave his blessing to the video games. I'm sure that the estate isn't going to like the Godfather 2 game.

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

Wow. Thios is actually a reasonable suit. Something you rarely see.