Universal Studios had submitted its first court papers in the new battle over whether Section 6 -- a film project about the early days of the U.K.'s spy agency MI6 -- is a James Bond knock off.
Last week, MGM and Danjaq, rights-holders of the lucrative 007 franchise, filed a copyright lawsuit against Universal and alleged there could be no question about the derivation of "a motion picture project, in active development, featuring a daring, tuxedo-clad British secret agent, employed by 'His Majesty’s Secret Service,' with a 'license to kill,' and a 00 (double-O) secret agent number on a mission to save England from the diabolical plot of a mega lomanical villain."
The plaintiffs followed up the complaint with an application to expedite discovery. MGM wants documents to evaluate whether it needs to seek preliminary injunctive relief to stop Universal from moving forward with Section 6.
Universal has tapped entertainment law veterans Bert Fields and Aaron Moss to respond.
In papers filed with a court on late Friday, they are fighting the request to move things along quickly by saying the "picture in question has not been 'green lit,' i.e., no decision has yet been made whether actually to produce it. Indeed, any 'green light' decision is many months away. "
Universal also advisement to MGM that Section 6 won't infringe James Bond intellectual property.