updated 06:30 am EDT, Wed May 25, 2011
Hurt Locker producers to recoup claimed losses
The producers of the Academy Award winning motion picture The Hurt Locker are suing a record 24,583 BitTorrent downloaders. Voltage Pictures hopes to recoup millions of dollars it claims it has lost through illegal downloading activities. The company has hired a group of lawyers known as the US Copyright Group to undertake the action what is the biggest lawsuit of its kind to date.
Most of the defendants are users of Comcast (10,532), followed by Verizon (5,239), Charter (2,699) and Time Warner (1,750). However, it may take the ISPs many years before they are able to supply the user information of customers as has been requested. Charter has promised to look up 150 IP-addresses a month and Verizon 100 a month for all ongoing BitTorrent lawsuits, while Comcast has yet to agree to supply customer details.
Moves to dismiss the cases against individual defendants have been thrown out by the judge presiding over the case. Voltage Pictures lawyers plan to force the illegal downloaders to pay large settlements, rather than see each of them in court. The pay off could well be worth it. If 10,000 people settled at $2000 each, this would bring Voltage Pictures around $20 million. This compares very favorably with the $17 million The Hurt Locker grossed at the US box office. [via Torrent Freak]