Published On: Wed, Apr 1st, 2015

Producer Steven Kaplan Wins $27 million in Appeal over Production Deal

He also believes the four-year nightmare “had a pretty big impact on my getting divorced."

The Big Empty

In late 2010, producer Steven Kaplan signed two deals for $300 million with Anthony Lombard-Knight and Jakob Kinde, who, it seems, were, or thought they were, representing a foreign investment company named Fortnom, to finance his next 10 films.

Kaplan started developing projects, and then the investment deal died—every producer’s nightmare.

Kaplan then found out Fortnom  had not been properly incorporated as a company.

Ever since, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Kaplan, who used to be a lawyer before he started making movies, has been chasing after Lombard-Knight and Kinde, Fortnom’s original representatives, waging a legal “frickin’ war” over four years, in the U.S. and the U.K.

“There were a lot of days I just wanted to stop, it was so painful, ” Kaplan told THR.

Last Wednesday, the California Second District court gave Kaplan’s company what the trial court had originally awarded him in 2012: close to $27 million in damages.

“I think it’s over, ” Lombard-Knight’s attorney told THR, saying his client wasn’t taking the case to the state Supreme Court.

Jakob Kinde has separately stated he was also a victim of the fraud.

Kaplan used instead his own money, and lost films he was working on to other production companies.

He also believes the four-year nightmare “had a pretty big impact on my getting divorced.”

Yes, we can see that.

Kaplan’s Rainstorm has made “The Big Empty, ” with Jon Favreau and Kelsey Grammer, and “Red White Black And Blue, ” a WW2 documentary.

Now, Kaplan will have to deal with collecting the money he was awarded. “I will chase them till the end of time, ” he told THR. “I’ve paid too high of a price to let that go.”

Meanwhile, Rainstorm has signed a deal for “Road to Capri, ” to be shot in Italy with Alfred Molina and Virginia Madsen.


This story first appeared on April 1st, 2015 and has now been corrected to clarify that Jakob Kinde has pointed out to us he was also an unwitting victim of the scheme.

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