The war for Woodstock storms forward, hurdling towards its bloody conclusion.
Earlier this week, Woodstock LC, the entity that owns the Woodstock intellectual property, and Dentsu/Amplifi live, the Japanese mega-corp that invested nearly $18 million in the event, battled over a preliminary injunction in New York state court. The confict was rooted in the fact that Woodstock 50 was facing problems. After it was revealed that permits had not be granted for the event some four months before it was scheduled to take place, Dentsu unilaterally "canceled" the event and withdrew $17.8 million in investment funds. Woodstock LC claime dDentsu did not have the right to "Cancel" the event nor could it withdraw the investment funds. Woodstock LC then sued Dentsu.
The court issued its ruling earlier this week. Judge Barry Ostrager ruled that Dentsu did not have the right to cancel the event, and that Woodstock LC had the right to continue on with the event. However, the Court also ruled that Dentsu did have the right to withdraw the $17.8 million in investment funds due to Woodstock, LC's breaches, essentially leaving the event penniless, for now.
Woodstock 50 organizer Michael Lang stated, “We have always relied on the truth and have never lost faith that the Festival would take place. I would like to thank all of the talent and their representatives for their patience and support. Woodstock 50 will be an amazing and inspiring festival experience.”
Woodstock 50 LLC’s lawyer Marc Kasowitz stated, “We are gratified that Justice Ostrager has ruled unequivocally that Dentsu did not have the right to cancel the Festival, and is immediately enjoined from cancelling the Festival. Today’s order is an important victory that means the show will go on for the fans, the talent, and the world, which was and remains Woodstock 50’s mission.”
Dentsu/Amplifi live stated, "“We feel vindicated to hear that the court agreed with what we have maintained all along: Woodstock 50 was not entitled to access the festival bank account per the contract and thus any access now is denied and the $17.8M remains with Amplifi Live. The court also noted that ‘…Amplifi [Live] asserted by convincing testimony adduced at the hearing that it intended to mitigate its damages from a music festival that could not be successfully produced by mid-August because, among other reasons, multiple permits necessary to conduct the Festival were not in place, tickets had not yet been sold, no budget had been agreed upon, necessary and expensive structural improvements to the Festival site and related areas had not yet started, and the production company essential to produce the Festival had withdrawn.’ The court did not rule that Amplifi Live’s assumption of control over the festival was improper or alter that status in any way. While we understand that pursuant to the court’s ruling Amplifi Live cannot cancel the festival without Woodstock 50’s agreement, at this time we do not intend to further invest in the festival due to the issues noted by the court, as well as the compressed timeframe, and multiple health and safety concerns.”
Lang claims that the event will take place as scheduled. Earlier, he stated that tickets would run about $450. Let the war for Woodstock rage on, my brothers. Only the strongest shall survive.