U. S. District Judge Andrew J. Guilford has issued a ruling exonerating Future/Now Films, the makers of the indie documentary MC5 - A True Testimonial.
MC5 - A True Testimonial is about influential ‘60 Detroit rock band the MC5 and was scheduled for a 2004 release. But at the last minute, the release was halted due to a lawsuit brought on by members Wayne Kramer, Dennis Thompson and Michael Davis. Though all three were interviewed for the film and originally cooperated, alongside the families of the deceased members Rob Tyner and Fred “Sonic” Smith (husband of punk icon Patti Smith), they later accused the filmmakers of not living up to certain agreements, including making Kramer the music supervisor.
"It's good to remember the 60's, but some say if you remember the 60's you weren't there,” Judge Guilford said in his ruling. “Perhaps to assist all of us in remembering the 60's, Defendants David Thomas and Laurel Legler made a film on the MC5, a 60's Detroit Rock and Roll band that made its mark on American history with loud rock and roll and radical perceptions positing an imperialistic and materialistic America. This lawsuit teaches that materialism remains with us, as Plaintiffs vigorously seek money from Defendants. Although the MC5 faded away largely due to drugs, the band lingers on in the memory of many, and would be known to many other but for pending legal feuds."
He continued: "Much of this case rests upon the credibility of witnesses, and the Court finds that Thomas and Legler were far more credible than Kramer on key issues concerning alleged promises, representations and commitments. Defendants were first-time filmmakers who spent eight years of their lives trying to create a documentary film that would be historically truthful, a documentary that would celebrate the talent and creativity of the MC5 band, a documentary that would say something about the 60's, and would say something about the present. They succeeded, and the film merits wide distribution for the enjoyment and edification of the masses."
Wow….sounds kinda like Kramer and crew got their asses handed to them! Hopefully it will get released now, but in the meantime go find a bootleg copy and do some learnin’ and rockin’…it’s an incredible film…
Detroit Tango: Future/Now Films Defeats Kramer Lawsuit In Federal Court