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Lawsuit filed over film rights to Stephen King's Children of the Corn

Children of the Corn Fritz Kiersch Linda Hamilton

Producer Donald P. Borchers has an association with the CHILDREN OF THE CORN franchise that goes back more than thirty years, as he was one of the producers on director Fritz Kiersch's 1984 adaptation of Stephen King's short story. Borchers didn't have any involvement with the many CHILDREN OF THE CORN sequels that have been put out by Dimension Films over the years, but in 2004 he approached the company about putting together a remake of the original film. Intrigued by the idea, Miramax/Dimension acquired the remake rights from Park Avenue Entertainment, who have been the CORN rights holders since the early '90s.

That theatrical remake has never gotten off the ground, but Borchers found an alternative - Fox holds the rights to any remakes that might be made for television, so in 2009 Borchers wrote and directed a CHILDREN OF THE CORN remake that made its debut on Syfy.

Now Borchers is looking to make more CHILDREN OF THE CORN, and has written a spec script that he describes as "a spin-off" from King's story. He was able to acquire spin-off rights from Park Avenue Entertainment, but Dimension is disputing his claim, believing they hold the rights to any non-TV CORN projects. So Borchers is now taking Dimension to court in hopes that a judge will confirm that he has the rights to make his spin-off. Part of the process will require Borchers' legal team to make it clear that a spin-off is something other than a sequel or a remake.

Dimension recently rushed a low budget CORN sequel, CHILDREN OF THE CORN: RUNAWAY, into production so they could hold on to the rights they do have. The company has never revealed any release plans for that film.

Regardless of who currently holds which rights, if anyone wants to make a CHILDREN OF THE CORN movie without King's direct approval they're going to have to move quickly. King recently filed to terminate the transfer of his licenses for several of his older movies, including CHILDREN OF THE CORN. That termination will be effective as of September 1, 2018. After that time, any company that wants to make a sequel, remake, spin-off, or whatever of CHILDREN OF THE CORN is going to have to contact King about it and make a new deal with him.

Extra Tidbit: Are you a fan of the CHILDREN OF THE CORN films?
Source: THRZernerLaw

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