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Mean Girls author alleges zero payment from Tina Fey for franchise success

Updated on: 20 March,2023 05:51 PM IST  |  Mumbai

Rosalind Wiseman, the author of 'Mean Girls' book seeks legal action, alleges exclusion from $130M movie profits

Mean Girls author alleges zero payment from Tina Fey for franchise success

Tina Fey's Instagram

Rosalind Wiseman, the author of the book which inspired the hit movie 'Mean Girls' has called lawyers in after claiming she has been 'cut out' of profits from the film which made $130 million.

The author of the book which inspired the movie 'Mean Girls' has claimed that she hasn't profited from its huge success, reports

Wiseman was approached by Tina Fey after publishing her book 'Queen Bees' and 'Wannabes' in 2002.

After obtaining the film rights, Tina went on to adapt it into the hit movie released in 2004 starring Lindsay Lohan.

It also featured 'Queen Bee' and head of 'The Plastics' Rachel McAdams as the ultimate mean girl, Regina George.

While the film went on to gross $130 million at the box office, Wiseman claims she was paid $400,000. The movie has since become a franchise and is now a Broadway and West End musical, which is also set to be turned into another movie.

Now Wiseman, who accepts she sold the film rights 20 years ago, is claiming she has not been properly paid by Fey or Paramount Studios, who produced the film.

As the franchise prepares to make even more money, she told the New York Post: ‘For so long I was so quiet about it, but I just feel like the hypocrisy is too much. I think it's fair for me to get compensated in some way for the work that has changed our culture.’

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She added: ‘Over the years, Tina's spoken so eloquently about women supporting other women, but it's gotten increasingly clear to me that, in my own personal experience, that's not going to be the experience. You don't just talk about supporting women, you actually do it.’

Wiseman first met Saturday Night Live star Fey in 2002, shortly after her book came out.

Fey had just signed a comedy deal with Paramount and asked Wiseman if she could buy the film rights to her book, which centres on the cliques girls form in high school.

The writer went on to be a consultant on the movie and says Fey made her feel it was very much a ‘we're doing this together’ experience. She said that she chose Fey to make the film over multiple offers from other studios.

But now it has been made into a franchise and Wiseman claims she hasn't seen another penny and is planning to get lawyers in to try and claw back some of the money she claims she is owed.

The movie was a surprise hit and spawned quotes such as ‘That's so fetch!’

‘I'm a cool mum’ and ‘On Wednesdays we wear pink.’

Wiseman's original contract is said to have included net profits - extra cash depending on how well it did at the box office.

But she claims despite getting in touch with Paramount several times, they have repeatedly told her they have made no net profits from the film so there is nothing to share with her.

Her lawyer Ryan Keech said that the way his client has been treated by the studio is ‘nothing short of shameful.’

He told the New York Post: ‘I suspect most people would be shocked at how shabbily Rosalind Wiseman has been treated. And properly so.’

‘It is nothing short of shameful for a company with the resources of Paramount to go to the lengths to which it has gone to deny Ms Wiseman what she is fairly entitled to for having created what has become one of the most iconic entertainment franchises of the last 25 years.’


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