Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Kickstarter - The Great Kingdom Documentary ordered offline by Courts

It wasn't long ago that the folks behind The Great Kingdom (a D&D documentary) ran a Kickstarter to raise funds for the endeavor. Which was interesting, as two of the folks behind this documentary were formerly behind the OTHER D&D documentary: Dungeons & Dragons, a Documentary.

Shortly after the new project was announced, the folks behind the first project sued. All this was going on while money was being raised for the new project, which successfully funded.

As of now, The Great Kingdom is literally offline, with a take down order issued by the NYS Supreme Court.

I didn't support either Kickstarter, but the lawsuit made me extra nervous about the second one. Seems I was right to be nervous.

No idea what this means for those that supported the project that is currently suspended.


  1. That stinks. The trailer looked awesome!

  2. There is a lot of discussion about this event at various sites. Apparently, the KS money will be held in escrow until a legal decision is made...either that TGK can go on and release their version, or that it infringes upon the original D&D Documentary...and then I expect the money would be returned to the supporters.There is hope that before a legal decision is rendered both sides can come to some sort of agreement.

  3. And how much money did "Dungeons & Dragons, a Documentary" waste pursuing the lawsuit that could have been better spent making their documentary better.

    If I was a supporter of them, I'd be pissed too.

  4. Tenkar's Tavern actually played a role in the lawsuit, at least where the injunction occurred. Back here, they took a screen grab of this page.


    And in document #20, this statement was made by Savini...

    "Another of the supporters to which defendants are grateful is Benoist Poire. See Ex. A. Hereto. Through his support for defendants' competing film, he apparently has been given the impression by defendants' that "the Great Kingdom grew out of" the D&D Production. The Benoist comment can be seen at Exhibit B p. 2. Ernie Gygax, another supporter of the competing film and a relative founder of D&D, also acknowledges there that defendants have "spent a couple of years and plenty of air miles" on the competing project. Id. By defendants own admission they had only started working on the competing project in or about August, 2013, almost one year ago -- by no means "a couple of years". Ernie Gygax, who had been interviewed for the D&D production in 2012 simply acknowledges that defendant's competing film is a product of the original partnership's hard work and expenditures."

    So it's sort of ironic in a way that the promotion of the Kickstarter that helped get it funded may also have given enough preliminary evidence so an injunction was granted.

  5. I meant document #28, this one...


  6. I'm sorry to see this, but not surprised. It always seemed a little dodgy that these guys were working on one D&D film and then left to start another; it spooked me away from even considering the Kickstarter. I'm not saying anyone is guilty of any wrongdoing, but some kind of lawsuit was pretty much inevitable. I hope they get it sorted out, because I personally wouldn't mind seeing BOTH movies.

  7. I'd like to see both movies two--but only if there was no wrongdoing involved, which will be up to the court to decide--it's a little tough to tell who's correct here. In any case, the money is held in escrow right now by Kickstarter, so depending on how it goes everybody will either get their money back, or they'll get what they were promised.

    The big question is what would happen if a partial penalty occurs. I could see them having to remove some but not all of their footage (perhaps in that document they'd be forced to remove everybody on that list, but I could also seeing that butchering the movie), I could see them being forced to delay release of the film for a few years, etc. If the plaintiffs win, I hope that the footage could be acquired and then released as bonus footage or otherwise given to another party for archiving.

    Based on what I read, both parties need to give their raw footage to the judge for review and for both sides to review per discovery. Then, preliminary hearings will be heard. The defense is trying to get the case completely dismissed. So I doubt there will be any movement on this until the fall.


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