Thursday, January 11, 2007

‘Z’ Movies Inspire Title Bout Between Filmmakers

LOS ANGELES (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – A name game between two filmmakers is turning into a “Z-rated” title bout.

Filmmakers Richard Halpern and Leo Grillo have separately made films with similar titles: Zzyzx and Zyzzyx Rd.

Although the similar titles have led to lots of confusion, trademark lawyers have worked out a deal allowing both filmmakers to use their separate Z titles.

Still, Halpern says showbiz insiders keep confusing the titles; a problem that worsened when Zyzzyx Rd. debuted in a Dallas theatre a few months ago, and reportedly earned $30 in box office receipts and the dubious honor of being “the lowest grossing movie of all-time.”

That led to a flurry of interviews for Grillo, and Halpern claims he’s using the publicity to discredit Zzyzx.

Grillo insists he’s merely pointing out that Zyzzyx Rd. is a big screen feature starring Grey’s Anatomy star Katherine Heigl, while Halpern’s is “a personal project made with a handheld camera.”

Halpern believes his film is better, and wants to post both films online and let fans vote, with the loser agreeing to a name change.

Don’t expect that to happen. Grillo says Halpern signed a document that “precludes him from making that offer.”

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