Evil Genius Games has announced that they are taking legal action against Netflix regarding a tabletop roleplaying game based on Zack Snyder‘s upcoming film Rebel Moon.
In a release, Evil Genius Games explained they began working on the game in February 2023 with a release date around the time of the film’s release in December 2023.
On May 25, 2023, Netflix terminated the agreement claiming Evil Genius “violated confidentiality provisions” by sharing artwork at the GAMA Expo.
Evil Genius in their action have stated that the artwork was sent to Netflix for review and approval before the event and it was a joint presentation between Evil Genius Games and Netflix.
Evil Genius has made a splash with tabletop roleplaying games based on popular properties like Escape from New York, Rambo, Highlander, Pacific Rim, Universal Soldier, and more.
You can read Evil Genius’ full statement below where they encourage individuals to sign a petition to show their support.
Evil Genius Games today sued Netflix for wrongfully terminating Evil Genius’ contract to create a tabletop role-playing game (TTRPG) for the widely anticipated Rebel Moon film franchise by Zack Snyder. The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in the Central District of California.
Snyder, the acclaimed director of action and science fiction films, revealed in a podcast in March 2023 that a TTRPG based on Rebel Moon was in the works, lauding the work of Evil Genius’ team of creators.
Evil Genius began working with Netflix in early 2023 and signed an official agreement with Netflix on March 22, 2023, to develop the game and related materials, promising a delivery date to coincide with the film’s release on December 22, 2023. Evil Genius paid Netflix for a license, with an agreement to share profits.
Evil Genius stopped other projects to focus on the Rebel Moon TTRPG, the lawsuit states. By May, Evil Genius had produced a 228-page World Bible (which vastly expanded on the universe envisioned by Snyder), a 430-page Player’s Guide and a 337-page Game Master’s Guide. The initial script for Rebel Moon was “missing background information vital to the story as a whole and to the world,” the lawsuit states, with Evil Genius supplying “all the missing pieces” along with “a cohesive backstory for the entire Rebel Moon franchise.” According to the lawsuit, “the speed at which the project came to fruition astounded Netflix executives, and [Evil Genius] exceeded everyone’s expectations.”
Later that month, on May 25, Netflix suddenly terminated the agreement with Evil Genius, claiming the company had violated confidentiality provisions in its contract by sharing artwork at an industry trade show one month earlier. In the lawsuit, Evil Genius said the termination came as a surprise because it had sent the artwork to Netflix in advance of the event, the Game Manufacturers Association Exposition (GAMA), and Netflix had approved its use. Documents containing the artwork were handed out to retailers at GAMA by Evil Genius’ staff and two Netflix employees.
Two weeks later, Netflix notified Evil Genius that all of its work on the project “belongs solely and exclusively to Netflix,’’ the lawsuit states, with Netflix refusing to honor its agreement with Evil Genius to allow the release of the game and compensate the company for its work.
“It became clear’’ the lawsuit alleges, “that Netflix was simply using the alleged breach and termination to hijack [Evil Genius’] intellectual property and prevent [Evil Genius] from releasing the game.’’
David Scott, Evil Genius’ CEO said the decision to file a lawsuit was not made lightly.
“Our aim is to ensure our team is recognized for their fantastic work, and that we can release this game for millions of TTRPG enthusiasts to enjoy,’’ Scott said. “It’s disheartening to see Netflix backpedal on content that was jointly showcased and had received their prior consent. We urge our supporters to contact Netflix and Zack Snyder to push for the release of this game.’’
Evil Genius is encouraging supporters to visit https://evilgeniusgames.com/netflix-lawsuit/, where they can sign a petition asking Netflix to acknowledge the creators of the Rebel Moon World Bible and allow Evil Genius to release the tabletop role-playing game.