Taymor to Get ‘Spider-Man’ Royalties as Producers Settle

Spider Man
Reeve Carney in "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" in New York. Julie Taymor was the original creator of the play. Photographer: Jacob Cohl/O&M Co. via Bloomberg

Feb. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Producers of “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” said they will pay royalties to the show’s former director, Julie Taymor, three months after she sued for back pay.

Taymor is entitled to $9,750 a week, according to a production budget filed with the New York State Attorney General’s office.

The announcement is part of a settlement with the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, which had filed an arbitration on Taymor’s behalf. She’s entitled to royalties from the beginning of the run through the end.

Producers of the $75 million musical continue to battle in court over her role in writing the book of the musical and whether she’s owed money. She was replaced in March, and producers said in court papers that a new book they commissioned isn’t similar to the book on which she collaborated.

Laura Penn, executive director of the directors society, said she’s hopeful there will be a settlement.

“Julie should be making great theater and not in litigation,” she said in a telephone interview.

Taymor wasn’t available for comment, said a spokesman, Chris Kanarick.

Taymor sued producers in November 2011, claiming that they refused to pay royalties guaranteed by her contract and violated her intellectual-property rights by changing the show without her permission. As the co-writer, she said she worked on the script for more than seven years. Producers countersued last month in federal court in Manhattan.

The show formally opened on June 14, 2011, after 182 previews. Last week, its eight performances grossed $1.4 million, behind only “Wicked” and “The Book of Mormon,” according to the Broadway League, a trade group,

The case is Julie Taymor v. 8 Legged Productions LLC, 1:11-cv-08002-RJH, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

To contact the reporter on this story: Philip Boroff in New York at pboroff@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jeffrey Burke at jburke21@bloomberg.net