Avi Lerner, founder of Nu Image Films, and Millennium Films, is getting ready to sue the torrenters of The Expendables 3, citing 10 million downloads caused The Expendables 3 to lose $250 million in revenue.
Avi Lerner is no stranger to claiming lost revenue, as his companies have frequently been at the center of lawsuits. The difference being that Avi is usually the one getting sued. An article from Deadline in 2010 stated that First Look Films, which had been purchased by Avi Lerner in 2008, had 20 lawsuits aimed at it when it decided to claim bankruptcy. In 2012, Deadline also reported that Avi Lerner’s Nu Image was being sued by Langley Films, the producers of Cops, over revenues from 2 separate movies they invested in.
Lerner, worth $150m himself, “I know President Obama has got other problems around the world, but I still don’t understand why they don’t protect the electrician, the gaffer, the people who work so hard behind the scenes.” The Expendables 3 had a budget of $90m, with unknown millions of that given to its litany of megastars. Previous reports had stated that non-gaffer Bruce Willis quit because he was only offerred $3m for 4 days of work.
CEG TEK, a known IP copyright lawsuit troll, has sent out 50,000 letters strong-arming internet users for money to prevent individual lawsuits. They had previously worked on behalf of pornographic industries. They claim they have millions more IP addresses to track down and hustle. CEG TEK, who is not an electrician or made up of electricians, doesn’t work for free and will recieve a portion of the winnings.
Previously, distributor Lionsgate sued 10 anonymous pirates over the illegal torrents 2 weeks before The Expendables 3 came out, but the results of that lawsuit have not been released.
Completely absent from the discussion has been whether people wanted to pay to see The Expendables 3 in theaters, and the negative reviews the movie received with 33% rotten at Rotten Tomatoes. The movie flopped in America, making only $38m domestic on a $90m budget. Lerner’s lawsuit believes that, without piracy, the movie would have made $288m domestic, despite The Expendables 2 making only $85m domestic. The movie made $150m worldwide.