Warner Bros. is taking a step to crack down on its movies leaking online by going after a talent agency it claims helped movies such as Creed, In the Heart of the Sea, Mad Max: Fury Road and The Man From U.N.C.L.E. end up on the internet illicitly last year, reports Deadline.
Warner Bros. has filed a lawsuit against Innovative Artists, which it says made digital copies of screener DVDs that the studio sent the agency to give to one of its clients. Studios still commonly send out DVD copies of their movies while they're still in theaters or even earlier so that members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences can screen them for Academy Award consideration.
From the lawsuit:
"Beginning in late 2015, Innovative Artists set up and operated an illegal digital distribution platform that copied movies and then distributed copies and streamed public performances of those movies to numerous people inside and outside of the agency."
The complaint, filed in federal court, claims that after Innovative Artists shared copies of its films on its digital platform, those movies ended up on piracy sites around the internet. Warner Bros. also says it knows Innovative Artists is to blame, because the DVDs were watermarked to show who they were intended for.