WB Reverses Course On Canceling COYOTE VS ACME After Public Outcry; Congress Calls For Investigation

WB Reverses Course On Canceling COYOTE VS ACME After Public Outcry; Congress Calls For Investigation WB Reverses Course On Canceling COYOTE VS ACME After Public Outcry; Congress Calls For Investigation

The public outrage over Warner Bros. Discovery's decision to put cancel the planned Coyote vs Acme animated film on hold for tax reasons was simply too loud for David Zaslav and co.

By MarkJulian - Nov 15, 2023 09:11 AM EST
Filed Under: Animated Features
Source: Toonado.com

The negative news surrounding Warner Bros. Discovery and CEO David Zaslav appears to have been too much for the studio, as it has reversed its decision to cancel Coyote vs Acme for tax considerations.

Four days ago, word emerged that WB planned to cancel and store the film in the WB vault, never to be seen again in order to secure a $30 million dollar tax break. The film was said to have cost WB $70 million to make.

The various Hollywood trades all reported that when news of the film's cancelation broke, various A-list talent told their reps to cancel upcoming meetings with the studio as a sign of opposition to such a fiscal-led strategy.

Some members of Congress are also calling for the studio to be investigated, equating the practice to burning down a building for insurance money.

Previously, Zaslav did something very similar with Batgirl and Scoob Holiday Haunt!, citing the COVID-19 pandemic as the catalyst for the decision with the prevailing thought being that the unusual circumstances of the pandemic is what led to what would be a one-off practice.

With no pandemic to blame, Hollywood's creative elite united behind Coyote vs. Acme director Dave Green, screenwriters Samy Burch and James Gunn, and composer Steven Price.

Originally set for release on Max, Green will now have the opportunity to shop the film to other streamers and networks. 

Now, WB is said to be holding a special screening for potential suitors, Apple TV+, Netflix, and Amazon, later this week and a theatrical release is not out of the realm of possibility.

According to reports, the plot of the film will see Wile E. Coyote from Looney Tunes sue Acme after using the company's products to try to capture Road Runner for years and failing.

The movie was a mix of animation and live-action, similar to Space Jam and Who Framed Roger Rabbit. Along with the Coyote and Road Runner, the film was set to star Will Forte, John Cena and Lana Condor.

Forte was set to play Wile E.'s lawyer, while Cena would have played Acme's CEO.  

WBD still has another Looney Tunes movie in the pipline,  Looney Tunes Movie, The Day the Earth Blew Up. Marketed as the first fully animated Looney Tunes film to be released in theaters, WB revealed at this year's American Film Market event that it expects to release the film in Q2 2024.

Another factor working in Coyote vs Acme's favor was the fact that the film was 100% complete, unlike Batgirl and Scoob Holiday Haunt! Yet, the director of Holiday Haunt! has since completed the film, prompting many to now wonder if a similar reversal could be handed down for that film.

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xfactor - 11/15/2023, 9:14 AM
Now this is win.
xfactor - 11/15/2023, 9:14 AM
@xfactor - a win**
kg8817 - 11/15/2023, 9:17 AM
Okay this is great and by all accounts it’s said to be a fantastic film.

But I still don’t get, with all this hype: why is WB shopping it to other streamers? It’s part of the Looney Tunes brand - why wouldn’t they release it in theaters or on Max and take advantage of the hype?

They really are well and truly stupid.
MarkJulian - 11/15/2023, 9:23 AM
@kg8817 - WB is severely strapped for cash after the merger and several big budget flops. as a streaming film, Zaslav’s thinking this $70M film won’t actually bring in any revenue or increase subscriptions, so better to take the tax write-off.
DudeGuy - 11/15/2023, 9:27 AM
@kg8817 - what cash return are they getting for releasing it on MAX? None. It won’t even move the needle as far as new subscribers go. Shopping content around to other streaming services is actually smart seeing as how they’ll get you know … money for it.
MarkJulian - 11/15/2023, 9:29 AM
@DudeGuy - But will they get the $70M back they spent on making it, now that all this information has already leaked?
DudeGuy - 11/15/2023, 9:31 AM
@MarkJulian - more than they would have gotten by dumping it on MAX.
bkmeijer1 - 11/15/2023, 9:27 AM
Damn, now Congress is in the mix? Things about to get serious
PC04 - 11/15/2023, 9:27 AM
OOOOO! get em
BlackSpider - 11/15/2023, 9:35 AM
Public outcry my ass. The goverment is starting to notice how scummy they are being, and they are panicking.
Th3Batman - 11/15/2023, 9:40 AM
I wonder if this could happen to Batgirl later down the line.
Forthas - 11/15/2023, 9:45 AM
I hatethis company...at leas the leadership. There is a rumor that Warner Brothers might purchase Paramount Global (formally Viacom). This a great idea to combine the two studios because the strengths of each studio complimnets the waeknesses of the other. The only problem I have is that it seems like it would leave Zazlav in charge. That would be tragic as he would probably run the combined company into the ground.
AmazingFILMporg - 11/15/2023, 9:50 AM
Zaslav is a [frick]ing moron and he needs to be investigated for fraud with his 90 day fiancee marriage scams too🤡
Polaris - 11/15/2023, 1:55 PM
@AmazingFILMporg - wait, what marriage scams?
AmazingFILMporg - 11/15/2023, 2:17 PM
@Polaris -

Zaslav makes reality shows called 90 day fiancee. It's a show about going overseas to get a wife or husband to get a green card. Shit is a scam😂
Polaris - 11/15/2023, 2:35 PM
@AmazingFILMporg - lmaooo
mountainman - 11/15/2023, 9:50 AM
WB has sure been making a lot of dumb decisions lately, but Congress can go jump off a cliff. Nobody has caused more destruction than that group of psychos.
Reginator - 11/15/2023, 10:18 AM
@mountainman - when you want corrupt fools to be involved, congress is top dog.
mountainman - 11/15/2023, 10:26 AM
@Reginator - I’m quite confident that money laundering and shady business practices happen in Hollywood. These studios have been shady since their inception.

But it always gives me a chuckle when Congress tries calling out corruption elsewhere.

It’s the top profession where you can go from moderate means to filthy rich not based on your salary or earnings, but because of kickbacks, speaking engagements, insider trading, and shady book deals that are given to you because of the corporations and industries that you favor.
RitoRevolto - 11/15/2023, 10:04 AM
I hope an investigation actually happens.
FireandBlood - 11/15/2023, 10:17 AM
About time, because there’s some seriously shady shit going on over rn
DocSpock - 11/15/2023, 10:22 AM

Congress vs. WB executive management.

Hard to imagine a fight between 2 bigger groups of scumbags. It's almost impossible to pull for either team.

mountainman - 11/15/2023, 10:26 AM
@DocSpock - I say they should battle it out old Rome style. Put it on PPV. I’d watch.
Webster614 - 11/15/2023, 10:29 AM
@mountainman - I wanna see Senator Mullin and that Teamsters boss fight on the floor. I'd pay for that PPV. Lets gooo.
AmazingFILMporg - 11/15/2023, 10:34 AM
@Webster614 -

Mullin is such a fraud and should be embarrassed. The guy pretends he was self made. He inherited his wealth from his daddy.

Truly embarrassing
mountainman - 11/15/2023, 10:48 AM
@Webster614 - Yes! CSPAN viewership would go through the roof if Congreemen could duke it out on the floor!
TheLobster - 11/15/2023, 10:33 AM
I mean cool but I bet the movie is still ass lol
MosquitoFarmer - 11/15/2023, 10:55 AM
Wile E. Coyote & Roadrunner are my favorite Looney Tunes cartoons (not including when they had the coyote speak), but I still can't help but feel people will only be let down by the movie, and likely realize it was shelved because it wasn't worth the hoopla.
newhire13 - 11/15/2023, 11:27 AM
Good, they should investigate! Sounds incredibly shady
DrReedRichards - 11/15/2023, 11:31 AM
Damn... Say what you will about Zaslav, but this movie has already been enjoying some of the weirdest but most efficient marketing ever.
MrDandy - 11/15/2023, 11:35 AM
A major win for art. We don’t need modern day book burning for tax breaks.
dracula - 11/15/2023, 11:44 AM
Will this translate to proper success though.

Lets face it the Tunes havent had a successful project since Space Jam

Most care only for the classic shorts
ModHaterSLADE - 11/15/2023, 12:08 PM
Good, the cancellation seemed shady AF anyway.
DianaGohan - 11/15/2023, 1:06 PM
Man just feels so deliciously ironic that this movie all about the Coyote wanting to get some justice in suing Acme now involves Warner Brothers being sued themselves for their horrible practices so Coyote vs Acme is now getting it's own sense of justice.
NinnesMBC - 11/16/2023, 1:37 AM
Good. I hope Zaslav gets fracked over.

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