LOS ANGELES, Oct. 21 (UPI) -- U.S. film producer John Singleton is suing Paramount Pictures and MTV Films for allegedly failing to follow through on a deal for the hit movie "Hustle & Flow."
The $20 million lawsuit says Singleton allowed Paramount to distribute the 2005 Sundance Film Festival favorite, which ended up making $22 million in the United States, in exchange for a $9 million fee, provided Paramount financed and distributed two other films for Singleton, as long as they didn't cost more than $3.5 million each, TheWrap.com reported.
The lawsuit, filed Wednesday in Los Angeles, alleges Paramount made it too difficult for Singleton's production company, Crunk Pictures, to exercise its options on the two subsequent films.
"Unfortunately, when Crunk attempted to exercise its right to 'put' the two pictures with Paramount, Paramount began asserting self-imposed, non-existent conditions on the 'puts' that prevented Singleton from making the pictures," the suit said.
A Paramount representative, in a statement to TheWrap, suggested the company didn't end up making the two Singleton movies because he chose to direct the film "Abduction."
"Paramount was hoping that John Singleton would produce two more pictures before his agreement with our studio ended in 2010 but that did not happen," the studio's statement reads. "Instead, he went on to direct 'Abduction' for Lions Gate. Paramount fulfilled all of its obligations and his claims have absolutely no merit."