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Julie Taymor, Producers Settle Bitter Spider-Man Lawsuit

Julie Taymor, the director who was ousted from the troubled Broadway production, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, has reached an out-of-court settlement with the producers after a protracted legal battle.

“The parties in this action have reached an agreement in principle,” U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan declared in a brief order. She was seeking at least $1 million in damages.

Details of the settlement were not immediately available, but the order gives each party 60 days to restart the case, if necessary, before the dismissal of the legal action becomes final, according to Reuters.

Under Taymor’s watch, the musical was plagued by technical problems involving the elaborate staging and harnesses used to create the illusion of Spider Man’s web-swinging. Several actors were injured, and the production was delayed at least five times to work out the kinks.

Taymor, who directed the Tony-winning Disney musical The Lion King, was fired in March 2011. She sued last November, claiming the producers violated her rights as one of the musical’s authors and failed to compensate her for her work. The suit also sought to bar the producers from taking the musical to non-Broadway venues.

The case took a nasty turn this past January when the producers counter-sued Taymor. It alleged Taymnor failed to do her job and was out to purposely injure investors by seeking to block future productions.

The show, featuring the music of Bono and The Edge, has gone on to become one of Broadway’s most successful shows. It has grossed more than $55 million this year, and led all other shows with a record $2.9 million gross during the crucial Christmas-to-New Year’s season last year, according to The Broadway League, which represents the industry.

The Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, Inc. represented the director.

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