The Butler barred from being called The Butler

Lee Daniels’ upcoming feature The Butler has met a seemingly insurmountable obstacle ahead of its August 16 release in the United States: it is not legally allowed to be called The Butler anymore.


That is a massive blow to The Weinstein Company, who have spent months promoting the film in the traditional manner of telling punters its name and emblazoning posters and trailers with it.

According to Deadline, Warner Bros sought to block the studio from using the title, as it already belonged to a short film produced by WB back in 1916.

Never mind all those other, more recent features that have shared names, such as The Avengers, Bad Boys, Beautiful Creatures, Twilight, et cetera.

The Title Registration Bureau ruled in favour of Warner Bros, giving Daniels and TWC just over a month to rename their project and advertise it accordingly.

Though the decision is being appealed, Daniels has attempted to reach out to Warner Bros CEO Kevin Tsujihara.

“Our brilliant writer Danny Strong, amazing cast, and I would like to offer to screen our movie for you today. I beg you to see it before you decide to force us to change the title. I truly believe that once you watch it, you would not want to cause this film any harm.”

The full letter is hosted at Deadline.

Forest Whitaker stars in the picture as Eugene Allen, the real-life White House butler who served eight separate presidents over 30 years.

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