Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) called for a federal investigation into Warner Bros. Discovery regarding the organization’s handling of the “Coyote vs. Acme” case.
“@WBD’s tactic of canceling fully-produced films to gain tax credits is predatory and anti-competitive.” Castro said in X, The platform formerly known as Twitter.
The studio reversed its decision to put the live-action/animation hybrid film on hold after The Hollywood Reporter reported I reported the news That Warner Bros. She dropped the film, making it one of several near-finished projects that were canceled due to tax write-offs in recent months.
The cancellation upset the creative community. After word spread about Coyote’s shelves, several filmmakers instructed their representatives to cancel meetings they had planned with the company.
After a state of anger, The company announced It will allow director Dave Green to sell the film to other potential buyers. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Amazon is the contender, but bids will be made to other buyers this month.
The discussion comes after federal investigators opened antitrust lawsuits in several other industries including technology, with Microsoft and Google, and entertainment, with Ticketmaster and Live Nation.
“As the Department of Justice and FTC review antitrust guidelines, they must review this conduct,” Castro’s post said, referring to the film and entertainment studio. “As someone noted, it’s like burning down a building to get the insurance money.”
According to director Brian Duffield, Coyote creator Green did everything right. The Hollywood Reporter said he delivered the film on a budget of $72 million, achieved the correct test results, and moved away from his home in London to save the studio money on post-production costs.
Film executives note that shelving a film for a tax write-off, avoiding distribution and marketing costs, can make a quarter of earnings look better, but it may also be short-sighted.
Castro He previously wrote letters To the Department of Justice asking them to examine the state of competition after the merger of Warner Media and Discovery. He said he applauds the antitrust enforcement agency’s efforts to update guidelines on federal mergers.
However, they were asked to examine the merger because “competition protection for workers and consumers is the core of antitrust law.”
“Antitrust laws seek to promote consumer choice, product diversity and industrial innovation,” Castro’s April 7 letter said. “Accordingly, if a completed merger results in significantly less available content and discourages innovation, the merger should be re-evaluated.”
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