Gregg Allman has issued a lawsuit against the producers of Midnight Rider, a biopic of the rocker’s life that has been thrown into turmoil following the on-set death of second camera assistant Sarah Jones. The battle concerns whether Unclaimed Freight, director Randall Miller’s production company that he runs with wife Jody Savin, still has the right to make the movie.
According to the complaint, acquired by EW, when Allman gave Unclaimed Freight the option to use his life story for the film, one of the provisions was that principal photography had to begin on Feb. 28, 2014. But, on Feb. 20, while in pre-production, Sarah Jones was killed and six others injured and production was suspended. More recently, Unclaimed Freight announced that it would resume production in Los Angeles in June. The lawsuit argues that the Formal Option Agreement expired when cameras did not roll in February.
This isn’t the first call to scrap the movie, though. A Facebook campaign was launched urging crew members to refuse to work on the movie, star William Hurt withdrew from the film, and, in late April, Allman wrote a personal letter to Miller asking him to shut down production permanently. “I am writing to you as one human being to another, and appealing to you from my heart,” Allman wrote. “I am asking you from a personal perspective not to go forward.”
But it appears that none of the calls have been heeded, so the next step is to prove that Unclaimed Freight doesn’t even have the right to make the movie anymore. Allman first informed the production company that their option had expired on March 5.
A rep for Miller and Savin had no comment, and EW’s request for comment from Allman’s rep was not immediately returned.