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Lawsuit May Halt Airing of Queen Latifah’s Steel Magnolias Remake

A lawsuit filed Monday could put a stop to the October 7 airing of the latest remake of “Steel Magnolias” which features an impressive ensemble of African American actresses. The executive producer of the original film, Victoria L. White, filed the suit alleging that the current production violates the television agreement included in her original contract.

In the suit filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court, Price is seeking a co-producer or co-executive producer credit on the new TV movie starring Queen Latifah, Phylicia Rashad, Jill Scott and Alfre Woodard.  White, who was not involved in the production, says also that she’s entitled to some cash for the Lifetime Entertainment remake — including a $15,000 fee, plus up to 3.75% of net profits from the movie. The suit also alleges that Sony Studios is fully aware of White’s TV deal. White says she is sure of this since the mega studio gave her a co-producer credit and compensation for a 1992 Tv movie based on “Steel Magnolias.”

Neither Sony or Lifetime have responded to the lawsuit.

Co-executive produced by Queen Latifah, this contemporary version of the film chronicles the lives and friendships of six women in Louisiana. The women support each other through life’s triumphs and tragedy’s while pondering the mysteries of life and death, husbands and children–and hair and nails. The film was shot on location in Louisiana and differs from the original version with updated references to contemporaries such as Michelle Obama and technological wonders including the iPhone. The made-for-tv movie also revamps the health issue faced by one of the central characters.

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