Entertainment Weekly

Subscribe

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content
Exclusive
Join our live viewing party of the 'This Is Us' season premiere.

This is Us

Tonight at 9PM ET

Article

Warren Beatty wins lawsuit over Dick Tracy rights

Posted on

Dick Tracy Warren
Everett Collection

After years of legal wrangling, a U.S. district court judge has resolved the feud between Warren Beatty and the Tribune Co. over ownership rights to the 1930s comic-strip character Dick Tracy, ruling in Beatty’s favor. Beatty bought the film and television rights to the square-jawed, yellow-fedora-wearing private detective from the Tribune Co. in 1985 and played him in a 1990 film, which he also directed. In the years since, the rights to the character had become ensnared in a legal fight between Beatty and the Tribune Co., with a potential sequel and TV series getting scuttled in the fray. The Tribune Co., which filed for bankruptcy protection in 2008, said in bankruptcy filings that the rights to Dick Tracy were potentially worth millions of dollars to the company. But Friday’s summary judgment ruled that, by making a half-hour television special about the character that aired in 2009 on Turner Classic Movies, Beatty retained the rights to the character “on an exclusive basis.”