Martin Scorsese has been sued for allegedly backing out of a film project.
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, private company Op-Fortitude Ltd has filed a lawsuit against The Irishman director over a planned film titled Operature Fortitude.
The film would have followed a strategic mission "pivotal to the course of World War II", according to a summary. However, Op-Fortitude Ltd - formed specifically for the planned movie - has claimed that production became troubled after entering into a contract with Scorsese.
"Op-Fortitude spent significant time and resources in partnering with Sikelia and Mr Scorsese, and Defendants' refusal to perform has put the Picture in jeopardy and resulted in the loss of financing, profits, and other commercial opportunities," the filing read. "Op-Fortitude has also suffered substantial delays in the production of the Picture as a result of Mr Scorsese's dereliction of his contractual duties."
In January 2022, the company entered into a contract with Scorsese's production company Sikelia Productions and made him an executive producer of the film. According to court documents, Op-Fortitude executives agreed to pay $500,000 (£400,000) upon execution of the contract and another $500,000 at a later time.
Since signing the contract, the documents allege that Scorsese "has been completely non-responsive to Op-Fortitude's repeated attempts to reach him and secure the fulfilment of his obligations". They also claimed that they "detrimentally relied on Sikelia's and Scorsese's representations that Mr Scorsese would personally contact actors and other key personnel such as potential director candidates to help Op-Fortitude assemble an all-star cast and lend to the overall value of the project".
In the filing, Op-Fortitude sought a return of their initial $500,000 payment, though they claimed that Scorsese's alleged breach of contract has cost them millions of dollars because they planned to film in Europe in late 2022.