Vince Zampella and Jason West's Case Against Activision Going to Trial

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Posted by patrickklepek (2215 posts) -

My dream is coming true, guys.

When Infinity Ward co-founders Vince Zampella and Jason West split from Activision in 2010, things got ugly and lawsuits were filed. The lingering question over the ordeal has been whether the parties involved would settle out of court. According to The Hollywood Reporter, however, a judge has ruled the duo has sufficient claims and the lawsuit is headed to trial.

That said, a settlement could still happen, but if neither side decides to back down, we could be looking at a trial later this year or early next. In which case, I'll be booking a flight to Los Angeles very soon, purchasing a fancy fedora hat, and employing Olly Moss to do my courtroom sketches.

#1 Posted by patrickklepek (2215 posts) -

My dream is coming true, guys.

When Infinity Ward co-founders Vince Zampella and Jason West split from Activision in 2010, things got ugly and lawsuits were filed. The lingering question over the ordeal has been whether the parties involved would settle out of court. According to The Hollywood Reporter, however, a judge has ruled the duo has sufficient claims and the lawsuit is headed to trial.

That said, a settlement could still happen, but if neither side decides to back down, we could be looking at a trial later this year or early next. In which case, I'll be booking a flight to Los Angeles very soon, purchasing a fancy fedora hat, and employing Olly Moss to do my courtroom sketches.

#2 Edited by rbanke (191 posts) -

Wonder if we'll finally get to hear some of the background truth on this.

#3 Edited by Tober (165 posts) -

Why are people suing eachother. Can't we all just get along?

#4 Posted by Make_Me_Mad (3119 posts) -

We're going to need some Max Payne level narration/monologuing from you on this one, Klepek.

#5 Posted by Kyle (2325 posts) -

Oh god I want this to happen so bad! It would be fascinating.

#6 Posted by Nictel (2441 posts) -

Get me a livestream and some popcorn!

#7 Posted by 234r2we232 (3181 posts) -

I read that title like they were against Activision going to court :|

#8 Posted by Applederp (116 posts) -

If West and Zampella win the suit, would Modern Warfare 3 cease to exist?
 
I don't know much about legal stuff

#9 Posted by chrismafuchris (1080 posts) -

How riveting.

#10 Posted by SpacePenguin (479 posts) -
@Applederp: It would still exist because I think Vince and Jason just want money off Activision not the rights to the game or anything, i could be wrong though
#11 Posted by Cold_Wolven (2295 posts) -

This should have been settled out of court, what's 30 odd million dollars to Activision. Are the duo's claims only the money that they are owed or are they going for more?

#12 Posted by FreakAche (2955 posts) -

Somehow, I don't care about this as much as I did a year ago.

#13 Posted by cartvader (142 posts) -

They are seeking the IP for "Modern Warfare" in addition to Money.  Depending on when it goes to court I would thinking stopping MW3 would be possible.  Would be interesting to see if they file an injunction to prevent it's release in November.

#14 Posted by JohnPaulVann (209 posts) -
@Applederp: No. MW3 will still come out, sadly. 
#15 Posted by Winternet (8055 posts) -

Olly Moss doing courtroom sketches? I'm in!

#16 Posted by MordeaniisChaos (5730 posts) -

@Applederp: I doubt they would do that to their former colleagues.

#17 Posted by Campbell000 (19 posts) -

Hahaha, I was like man how would that work.....and then an epiphany of epic poster concepts flashed through my mind.

#18 Edited by Gunharp (337 posts) -

I know this piece is short. But the attached image of Modern Warfare 3 is...uhm. I don't know, whatever.

Also whats up with this portion of The Hollywood Reporter piece you linked to:

"In March, Superior Court judge Elihu Berle ruled that Activision had sufficient claims against Electronic Arts."

I had no idea that happened. Do you think it will hurt or help the claims West and Zampella are making?

#19 Posted by White_Silhouette (477 posts) -

The only people going to make any money out of these lawsuits are the lawyers.

#20 Posted by notha (239 posts) -

@Tober said:

Why are people suing eachother. Can't we all just get along?

cuz acti decided to try to fuck their devs?

#21 Posted by FateOfNever (1855 posts) -

I wouldn't be surprised if this just gets tied up in court limbo though with constant delays and nothing ever getting resolved.  If it actually does, in fact, get into the courtroom and they get to battle, I'll be curious to see how things go down.

#22 Posted by Nonentity (239 posts) -

@cartvader said:

They are seeking the IP for "Modern Warfare" in addition to Money. Depending on when it goes to court I would thinking stopping MW3 would be possible. Would be interesting to see if they file an injunction to prevent it's release in November.

Wonder if the subtitle on the game of just calling it "MW3" in branding as opposed to "Modern Warfare 3" so far was trying to tippytoe around that, just in case.

#23 Posted by MeatSim (10942 posts) -

Wake me up in a year.

#24 Posted by NickFerg (36 posts) -

If you need someone to fill the role of Jimmy Olsen to your Clark Kent while you're in LA, I'll be your man. Or should I say boy?

#25 Posted by _Phara0h_ (891 posts) -

Olly Moss FTW

#26 Posted by Miningguyx360 (326 posts) -
@SpacePenguin: they want the property of Modern Warfare but not Call of Duty... also some cash I believe
#27 Posted by rmanthorp (4061 posts) -

@Winternet said:

Olly Moss doing courtroom sketches? I'm in!

Love it!

Moderator
#28 Posted by endaround (2147 posts) -

I want OJ trial type TV news Standups!  Standing out front of the court house telling us that nothing has happened today!

#29 Posted by Crash_Happy (737 posts) -

@Nonentity: They certainly appeared beforehand to be moving MW into it's own series, and are now backpedaling. Not even a full sub-title, just MW3.

I assume that Activision feel they have to take on this case, regardless how slim the odds, to deter any future staff jumping ship.

#30 Posted by TorMasturba (1089 posts) -

@White_Silhouette said:

The only people going to make any money out of these lawsuits are the lawyers.

Actually all sides stand to gain a significant amount. Activision would get continued rights to carry on sucking the COD franchise dry if they won, West and Zampella would stand to gain several million dollars of backpay and also ALL profits that Activision gained via the MW extension of the COD franchise and the rights to all future use of the MW name and it's tropes.

You were definitely right about the lawyers though.

#31 Posted by Foggen (900 posts) -

@Applederp said:

If West and Zampella win the suit, would Modern Warfare 3 cease to exist? I don't know much about legal stuff

@Cold_Wolven said:

This should have been settled out of court, what's 30 odd million dollars to Activision. Are the duo's claims only the money that they are owed or are they going for more?

West and Zampella are suing for control of the Modern Warfare brand, along with damages. They would theoretically have the right to block release of MW3 or take creative control over it, or demand vastly higher royalties to allow Activision to go ahead as planned.

Can not wait to see what happens.

#32 Posted by cheapandtacky (130 posts) -

Please let this got to court, it's the only way the truth (or whatever passes for it in a courtroom) is ever getting out.

#33 Posted by McDunkin (321 posts) -

I can't see this going to trial until AFTER MW3 is released. Or they will settle out of court to prevent any injunctions that may be given by a judge.

#34 Posted by Siphillis (1298 posts) -

War of the Douche-bags, commence!

#35 Posted by Airickson (120 posts) -

@White_Silhouette said:

The only people going to make any money out of these lawsuits are the lawyers.

Fact.

#36 Posted by MayorFeedback (674 posts) -

Heck yeah, televise that shit.

#37 Posted by craigbo180 (1726 posts) -

I don't think there is anything I could care less about than this.

#38 Posted by ShaneDev (1696 posts) -
It would be nice if  Activision was dealt a decent blow or lost the MW franchise but I honestly do not think this case will result in a win for the IW guys. Of everything reported it seems a little silly to believe that  Activision  wouldn't have a sound contract with these guys and would try and cheat them out of money in such a blatant way. I also wouldn't be surprised if the IW guys were meeting EA on  Activision' s time. I don't care who wins this but it might end up setting out of court.
#39 Edited by seanvail99 (130 posts) -
#40 Posted by outerabiz (666 posts) -
@craigbo180 said:
I don't think there is anything I could care less about than this.
same, well maybe mw3
#41 Posted by AuthenticM (3805 posts) -

:)

#42 Posted by Subjugation (4741 posts) -

So will this be on CourtTV?

#43 Posted by Silver-Streak (1386 posts) -

How crazy (and awesome) would it be if they won? That they owned the rights to the Modern Warfare series?

I believe this would mean that they would have to be paid royalties for MW3, and it would also mean Activision can't make any more MW without licensing it, /or/ it could mean a MW made by a publisher other than Activision.

#44 Posted by Y2Ken (1289 posts) -

... Cue the "correct/incorrect answer jingles" from LA Noire? Would liven up a court case no end.

#45 Posted by the_OFFICIAL_jAPanese_teaBAG (4284 posts) -
@NickFerg said:

If you need someone to fill the role of Jimmy Olsen to your Clark Kent while you're in LA, I'll be your man. Or should I say boy?

please dont be his man
#46 Posted by Quantical (369 posts) -

God speed Patrick, god speed. :D

#47 Posted by Jackel2072 (2279 posts) -

@Eujin said:

How crazy (and awesome) would it be if they won? That they owned the rights to the Modern Warfare series?

I believe this would mean that they would have to be paid royalties for MW3, and it would also mean Activision can't make any more MW without licensing it, /or/ it could mean a MW made by a publisher other than Activision.

i will never say never. though unlikely. in this case we always find our selfs rooting for the underdog no matter how preposterous. If they were to win the COD franchise it would not kill activision but it would take them down a few notches. most likely Kotick would be asked to leave the company by the shareholders as well.

#48 Posted by Silver-Streak (1386 posts) -

@Jackel2072: Yes. I don't think anything will kill Activision, short of Blizzard splitting off again.

#49 Posted by MisterMouse (3564 posts) -

PLEASE GET OLLY MOSS TO DO THOSE SKETCHES!!!! 

#50 Posted by wickedsc3 (1046 posts) -

Team Zampella and West!

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