Variety recently reported that the mayor of Batman, a city in southeastern Turkey, is suing Warner Brothers and Christopher Nolan for a share of The Dark Knight's royalties, claiming that using the city's name without permission caused a recent rash of unsolved murders and a high female suicide rate.
If this loose screw actually wins, it could set a dangerous precedent for Hollywood. Here, a few other movies that could be headed to court if Batman v. Warner Brothers ends poorly.
This one's a double whammy, because not only can the real Texas town sue Wim Wenders and Nastassja Kinski for using its name without permission, but Paris, France can probably get in on the action and sue the Texans. If this catches on, Rome, New York may have some 'splainin' to do.
If anyone's got a legitimate lawsuit, it's Chicago. Come on, the city of broad shoulders reduced to a razzle-dazzle musical starring Renee Zellweger? This is the city of Mike Ditka! Al Capone! Muddy Waters! And ... Mary Sunshine? Chicago's theme song should be "Mannish Boy" or "Smokestack Lightnin'," not "All That Jazz."
In the U.S. alone there are towns called Romeo in Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, Mississippi, and Tennessee, so Baz Luhrmann, you'd better hope Australia hits big so you can afford the payout.
Uh-oh. Mr. Luhrmann, you may have another problem.
Actually, Yuma might want this to be out there in the zeitgeist, potential windfall aside. I mean, before the 2007 remake, when was the last time anybody thought about Yuma? That's right, 1957, when the first one came out.
Now that's some quality irony -- the capital of bootlegs, suing over being used in the title of a terrible movie.
Can a dead city still sue? Why not? It's worth a try. And since the ruins of Troy are in modern Turkey, maybe our friend from Batman can double up on his yearly quota of frivolous lawsuits. (Sister city Aquaman, Azerbaijan, has nothing to sue about. Yet.)
They didn't call it Houston Powers, did they? Don't try to pretend that's a coincidence.
Come to think of it, why should the payday be limited to movies? Kobe, Japan might want a cut of that signing bonus, Mr. Bryant. Paris Hilton, Dakota Fanning, America Ferrera: consider yourselves on notice.