Smash Pictures Settles 'Fifty Shades' Suit Out of Court

HOLLYWOOD—Smash Pictures has agreed to pay Universal Studios an undisclosed sum to drop its lawsuit against the porn studio for damages stemming from the latter's release Fifty Shades of Grey: A XXX Adaptation (later renamed This Isn't Fifty Shades of Grey XXX This Is a Parody), an explicit screen version of the E.L. James novel to which Universal and subsidiary Focus Features acquired the movie rights last March for the price tag of $5 million.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Smash will consent to a permanent injunction barring the distribution of its porn adaption of the book. Universal and copyright holder Fifty Shades Ltd. originally filed suit against the proprietors of the XXX Adaptation in November, calling the production a "willful attempt to capitalize on the reputation of the book." The plaintiffs requested the permanent injuction in January.

Last week, Smash countersued, claiming the Fifty Shades novel was in the public domain because it was originally published online as fan fiction. Attorney for the plaintiffs Andrew Thomas of Jenner & Block reponded that the defendant's claim was "misleading and legally flawed."

The parties provided notice of settlement Friday, the Reporter said, and will be entering the terms of the injunction soon.

Smash Pictures declined comment on the settlement.