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Las Vegas based Rounds Entertainment and Max Cerchi Sued For Copyright Infringement.
Gary Streiner has received permission from the cemetery board to restore the chapel. But it can't be done without the help of Night Of The Living Dead Fans everywhere. Please visit Gary Streiner's Official Facebook Page for this effort to learn how you can join in and help to make a difference as we save this iconic cinema landmark. There is still time to save this piece of movie history but only with your help.
The official site is now up and running to save the chapel. Please visit: http://www/FixTheChapel.com aka LivingDeadFest.com for the details and to donate. Type your paragraph here.
Autopsy Of The Dead received the Home Video Industry's highest honor with the nomination of Best Direct To Video Title Of The Year at the Reaper Awards. The nominations were announced in the #1 home video industry source for Entertainment News, Home Media Magazine (Sept. 6-12 2009 issue). The nomination is extra special as I've always been a fan of filmmaker Roger Corman who was the celebrity judge.
Sponsors of the event are 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, Anchor Bay Entertainment, FEARnet, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and Warner Bros Home Entertainment Group, Entertainment One, Image Entertainment, Lionsgate, MTI Home Video, and Paramount Home Video.
The awards ceremely will be held October 12, 2010 at the historic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel where the first Oscars were presented. Congratulations to the amazing Autopsy Of The Dead cast and crew for this wonderful honor. Also special thanks to the fans of Night Of The Living Dead for their overwhelming support of our DVD Documentary. We have heard from so many of you from all over the world. Autospy Of The Dead was Produced and Directed by Jeff Carney. Produced by Jim Cirronella. Executive Produced by James N. Cirronella. Written by Jeff Carney and Jim Cirronella. For more information on the DVD Documentary, please visit the Autospy Of The Dead page on this website and the official site for the film, AutopsyOfTheDead.com. .
Autopsy Of The Dead Producer and Writer Jim Cirronella echoed the sentiment by adding "If I had just one word to describe Night Of The Living Dead, it would be love. While it may seem strange to describe a film in which the dead rise to attack and the devour the living as "love," it is that rare cinematic work where the filmmakers' collective love and devotion to their craft is evident in ever frame. It's equally rare that for a film initially dismissed by critics, it was almost immediately loved and embraced by a worldwide legion of fans. Their rabid enthusiasm for the cultural phenomenon that exists today due to Night Of The Living Dead can be best described as love. It's this same love and respect for the original film which compelled us to preserve it's history by creating Autopsy Of The Dead."
Independent Filmmaker Jeff Carney, who is being represented by the Reno Nevada law firm of Watson and Rounds, filed a lawsuit in 2003 against Rounds Entertainment and Max Cerchi also known as Massimiliano Cerchi of Las Vegas, Nevada for breach of contract and a federal copyright action for infringement.
The suit filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada alleged that Rounds Entertainment/Max Cerchi aka Massimiliano Cerchi of Las Vegas, Nevada breached the distribution contract for the sci/fi horror movie "THE SHADOW PEOPLE" and committed willful copyright infringement after the distribution contract was terminated by the plaintiff (Carney) after 20 months of waiting for video distribution through Rounds Entertainment. While Max Cerchi had sold copies of the movie, Carney had received no payment of any kind.
The online catalog belong to Rounds Entertainment contained the movie "The Shadow People" which was produced and directed by Carney, months after it was pulled from the distributor by the plaintiff. The distribution contract was terminated by the plaintiff in April of 2002 yet the movie remained for months in the catalog section of the Rounds Entertainment website as being available for sale. If someone placed an order then a copy of the movie would be shipped even though it was months after Rounds Entertainment lost the distribution rights to the title and had returned the masters to the plaintiff back in April of 2002.
Jeff Carney stated "I was fortunate that I kept detailed records and had excellent legal representation. We caught him selling (deposited check) and shipping the movie after he had lost the rights to the picture and had already returned the masters to me months before - after I terminated the distribution agreement. Even without the distribution rights and master, Max Cerchi / Rounds Entertainment was still willing and able to mail a copy of the movie to anyone who placed an order through their website. It's really sad and unfortunate because it hurts all of us who make or distributor independent films for a living when one distributor thinks that they can get away with breaching a contract and copyright infringement on a title that they no longer have the distribution rights to. Other distributors obey the laws and Massimiliano "Max" Cerchi of Rounds Entertainment should as well."
The U.S. District Court of Nevada issued a default judgment of over $96,000 for compensatory damages for breach of contract, willful copyright infringement, and attorney fee's and awarded the sum to Jeff Carney against Massimiliano "Max" Cerchi and Rounds Entertainment. It was further ordered by the Court that a permanent injunction be "entered against Defendants Rounds Entertainment and Massimiliano "Max" Cerchi, their officers, agents, servants, employees, and attorneys, and those persons in active concert or participation with them, prohibiting any future sales, leases, or copying of any kind or nature of "The Shadow People."
After the judgment was issued Jeff Carney stated, "This is a great day for independent filmmakers and distributors. A Court has shown that they are not going to tolerate a video distributor who breaks the law and who breaches a contract. The distributor who doesn't obey the laws or honor contracts is going to be held accountable for their actions. It's unfortunate that there are always a small minority of film distributors who think they don't have to compete on the same field as the other hard working distributors since most of them obey the laws and honor contracts. This judgment sends a strong message out to others and exposes Massimiliano "Max" Cerchi of Rounds Entertainment."
Carney went on to say "If more filmmakers took legal action, you would see less of this type of activity by people who believe they can get away with it because they think the independent filmmaker isn't going to take the time or effort to go after them. I know we touched a nerve when the day before depositions were to start for the trial, Cerchi's attorney called my law firm to inform them that he had not been in contact with Cerchi for several months and didn't know where he was. Cerchi fled, ignoring a Court Order to pay attorney costs for the plaintiff, while closing down www.roundsent.com (his company's website). It's a good day for all independent filmmakers as well as all of the honest distributors any time a person like this can be brought to justice and exposed. I'm very pleased with the Court's judgment against Massimiliano Cerchi / Rounds Entertainment.
If anyone has additional information regarding Max Cerchi aka Massimiliano Cerchi feel free to contact me.
July of 2013 Update: Special Thanks to several individuals for contacting me and contributing new information
The DVD of Autopsy Of The Dead is now available on Amazon.com and at the official Autopsy website AutopsyOfTheDead.com through Zero Day Releasing. A limited number of the DVDs sold only through the official site will include a random autograph of one the Night Of The Living Dead alumni. Please check the promotions page at the official site AutopsyOfTheDead.com for details on the autographs - while supplies last.
More photos added on the Autopsy Of The Dead page in the Films Section of this website.
Below is all three of the Autopsy Of The Dead film trailers - from the first advance trailer to the release trailer.
Board up the windows and doors!
Autopsy Of The Dead, the all new documentary on Night Of The Living Dead is released today on DVD! More than 40 years after filming the 1968 horror masterpiece, the "dead" return in Autopsy Of The Dead.
Autopsy is packed with 21 extensive cast and crew interviews, never before seen photos, behind the scenes footage, visits to the original filming locations, and other surprises to satisfy the hungriest ghoul's devotion to Night Of The Living Dead. Get ready for the most in-depth visual document on the making of the great American horror film that won't stay dead. The running time of the documentary is 144 minutes
in addition to the extra features.
Autopsy Of The Dead Producer, Writer, and Director Jeff Carney said "The production was our crusade to document and save a precious piece of cinema history that was quickly becoming lost due to the ravages of time. Autopsy Of The Dead is our best effort to lovingly preserve a film's history that not only means so much to us but to millions of fans around the world. This historical documentary provides a detailed view of the production by preserving the stories of the people who were witness to it firsthand. Many of whom have never been interviewed about their experiences before or in such great detail. Night Of The Living Dead changed cinema forever when the dead first walked back in 1968. As new generations of fans discover this classic film, it's our hope that the "dead" will forever walk and their stories will always be remembered."