Author demands trade-off

by John O'Brien |
Sep. 27, 2006, 8:17am

WHEELING - In exchange for cleaning his house, a Wheeling author says he was promised by another man that he would show his book to a movie producer.

John Kruzeski now says Bernard Morrisey never delivered and is suing him in Ohio Circuit Court.

In a case filed Sept. 15, Kruzeski claims that not only did Morrisey never show "Weirton Steel Employee Annihilation Plan" to producer Larry Kasdan, but that Morrisey does not even know him and made the deal in bad faith.

Kruzeski and Elizabeth Stewart say they cleaned and removed mold, insects, trash and mud from Morrisey's home, as well as performing landscaping and repair and replacement of a fireplace.

"In early March of 2006, John Kruzeski and Elizabeth Arden Stewart learned that Bernard Michael Morrisey had never contacted Larry Kasdan, nor had… Morrisey submitted the book… as agreed… for the rehabilitative repairs, services and labor performed… to Bernard Michael Morrisey's residence," the complaint says.

On March 17, the plaintiffs say they filed a Notice of Mechanic's Lien on Morrisey's home. They claim to have spent more than 500 hours working on the house.

"Bernard Michael Morrisey has been unjustly enriched from the repairs, services and labor performed… and (his) failure to comply with the oral agreement or otherwise reimburse John Kruzeski and Elizabeth Arden Stewart," the complaint says.

They seek the selling of Morrisey's real estate to satisfy their claim.

Kruzeski's book tells the story of Weirton Steel, from its founding to present day.

Kasdan was born in Miami, but grew up in Morgantown. He attended the University of Michigan. In 1979, he completed the screenplay for "The Empire Strikes Back" for George Lucas, who then commissioned Kasdan to write the screenplay for "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and "Return of the Jedi."

Kasdan also wrote, produced and directed "The Big Chill," "Silverado," "The Accidental Tourist," "Grand Canyon" and "Wyatt Earp."

Anthony Sunseri of Wheeling firm Burns, White and Hickton is representing the plaintiffs.

Judge Ronald Wilson has been assigned the case.

Ohio Circuit Court case number 06-C-335

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