'Deep Throat' Suit Back On After Deal Is Scuttled

Mar 23, 2011 1:30 PM PST

LAS VEGAS — The legal battle between Arrow Productions and VCX over “Deep Throat” and “The Devil in Miss Jones” is back on.

Arrow Productions owner Ray Pistol recently scuttled a settlement between the two companies just days after both parties informed the court an agreement between the two adult companies had been made in the copyright suit.

As a result, the case goes back on the docket.

Arrow attorney Clyde DeWitt in a brief to the court said that in a second meeting over settlement terms with Pistol it became apparent there had been a mutual mistake between client and attorney.

DeWitt said that he and VCX counsel had "spent many hours on the phone over three days" trying to hammer out a deal, and when they did it was just minutes before court-imposed pretrial order deadlines were due.

"It was clear from the meeting that Mr. Pistol never agreed to a highly material term of the settlement agreement," DeWitt told the court. "There never was a meeting of the minds between the parties as to the subject, material term."

According to a reference in the brief, "there was apparently miscommunication between DeWitt and Pistol concerning acceptable settlement terms."

Arrow in the suit has alleged trademark and copyright infringement and counterfeiting, among other charges, over the sale of versions of the movies produced in the early 1970s.

Arrow says it holds ownership of 16 “Deep Throat” movies, as well as two “Linda Lovelace” movies. The Las Vegas company also claims it owns six “The Devil in Miss Jones” movies.

VCX, which sells classic porn movies from the ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s, marketed copies of “Deep Throat” and “The Devil in Miss Jones” on its website.

DeWitt in previous interviews told XBIZ that the case hinged on the view that “[VCX] apparently believes that [‘Deep Throat’] is in the public domain.” he said. 

“Deep Throat” was produced by Plymouth Distributing owner Louis "Butchie" Peraino, who later called the company Arrow Film and Video, which is now known as Arrow Productions and headed by Pistol.

Arrow sued VCX and owner Dave Sutton at U.S. District Court in Las Vegas, seeking an order requiring VCX to stop selling the movies and to turn over to Arrow any inventory of the movies and DVD labeling and packaging.

Late Wednesday, Sutton told XBIZ he was astounded by Pistol's move to not sign off on the settlement, calling it "unbelievable, unimaginable."

"We first reached a handshake agreement in May of 2009. Then they stonewalled for over a year," he said. "Then, in August of 2010, we met and again reached a gentlemen’s agreement. Since a written agreement was only to be put together by the two attorneys and signed, I stopped replication of any further copies of 'Deep Throat,' which was to be part of the agreement.

"It took some time, but I signed the agreement last month. In the meantime, Arrow has never stopped replicating their unbelievably crappy versions of 'Debbie Does Dallas' and 'The
Devil in Miss Jones.'"

DeWitt told XBIZ he couldn't comment on the case.

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