A giant-screen IMAX film about country music is mired in a lawsuit charging Gaylord Entertainment with breach of contract, fraud, and bad faith. Gaylord -- which owns the Grand Ole Opry, Nashville's R

A giant-screen IMAX film about country music is mired in a lawsuit charging Gaylord Entertainment with breach of contract, fraud, and bad faith. Gaylord -- which owns the Grand Ole Opry, Nashville's Ryman Auditorium, Acuff-Rose Music Publishing, and other related businesses -- is being sued by Project 8, a company formed last year to create an IMAX movie called "Twang," due to debut this summer.

Filed last week in Davidson County (Tenn.) Chancery Court, the lawsuit was sparked when the film, which features more than 40 country music stars -- including the Dixie Chicks, Alan Jackson, and Dolly Parton -- went over-budget. Project 8, the principals of which have all won awards for their work on country music videos, blames Gaylord, claiming the company has failed to pay more than $1 million in bills related to "Twang."

The project ran into money trouble, the lawsuit says, because Gaylord "repeatedly and without explanation altered the script, vision, schedule, budget, and final production many times."

Gay lord spokesman Tom Adkinson said Project 8 exceeded the budget. "Our contract calls for them to deliver the project on time and on budget," Adkinson said.

The lawsuit also charges that Gaylord has failed to make a $250,000 contribution to St. Jude Childr en's Research Hospital in Memphis, which was "a key incentive to attract outstanding talent such as the Dixie Chicks" for lower than their normal fees.

"We expect to make that contribution, but the contribution is based on the completion and release of t he movie," Adkinson said.

The lawsuit asks for $1.07 million for breach of contract, $10 million in punitive damages, and all rights to the footage. A jury trial is requested.

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