Legal fallout begins two months after "Jesus Christ Superstar" cancellation. Really Useful Group, the London-based production company of composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, files lawsuit against the promoter Michael Cohl and his Options Clause Entertainment for the "unilateral decision" by OCE to scrap the musical.
The plaintiff said they'd "been tirelessly working to find an out of court settlement of the costs incurred by cancellation at such a late stage" and now have "no option but to proceed with legal action to recover its costs associated with the project and in turn, satisfy outstanding payments to suppliers and contractors."
In response, Cohl who is also the producer of "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" fired back in a statement to Billboard, "OCE is disappointed that RUG chose to misrepresent the facts and litigate issues that should have been resolved amicably. The fact is that the show did not sell. We look forward to our day in court."
The production got A-list cast members that included John Lydon of the Sex Pistols and Public Image Ltd., Michelle Williams (II) of Destiny's Child, Incubus' Brandon Boyd, and NSYNC's JC Chasez. Led by Ben Forster, it was cancelled just days before it was supposed to kick off in New Orleans on June 9 due to alleged poor ticket sales.
RUG's chief executive, Barney Wragg, argued that the previous "Jesus Christ Superstar" tour which also starred Forster in 2012 and 2013 was a success and expanded into an Australian leg. He added that the company was "hugely disappointed to be let down in this way particularly taking into account the impact (both personal and financial) that it has had on the many people who have put so much hard work into this project."