Terrence Malick‘s Sycamore Pictures has been sued by a London film financing company, which claims it has invested $3.3 million in the filmmaker’s “Voyage of Time” documentary project but six years later has yet to see a film.
The suit, filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan by Seven Seas Limited Partnership, also alleges that Malick used its investment to help produce other movies while procrastinating on this one.
“The claims of Seven Seas are without merit,," Sycamore’s lawyer Maura Wogan of Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz said in a statement to TheWrap. "The film was on budget, on schedule, and all funds were used appropriately. Additionally, Seven Seas’ decision to file this lawsuit under the cover of darkness and go public before presenting Sycamore with a copy of the suit itself speaks to the weakness of the allegations.”
“Voyage of Time” is described as a documentary about the creation of the universe and of evolution, and includes two 45-minute Imax films and a feature movie. The films, which had a total budget of $12 million, were to be finished in May, according to the suit.
“Sycamore consistently misrepresented that production of these films was moving forward for years, but now has missed production deadlines and blown through $6 million with little to show for it,” Seven Seas’ attorney Dan Webb told the N.Y. Post. .
“Yet during the six years he was supposed to be filming ‘Voyage,’ Malick has finished four other films, and Sycamore is now stonewalling our right under the contract to full access to everything relating to the development or production of the ‘Voyage’ films.”
Seven Seas is requesting access to Sycamore’s financial and production records, film footage, and other intellectual property from the project, in addition to its investment back.
Malick has reputation for being painstakingly deliberate. He has directed just six films since 1973, including “Badlands,” “Days of Heaven,” “The Thin Red Line,” “The New World,” “The Tree of Life and “To the Wonder.”
“The Tree of Life” starred Brad Pitt and was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar in 2011. His “Knights of Cups” is listed as in post-production on IMDB, but so is “Voyage of Time.”