Monday, October 23, 2017
In 2014, Waverly Scott Kaffaga filed a lawsuit against John Steinbeck’s son, Thomas Steinbeck, and his wife, Gail. Kaffaga claimed that she wanted to recover lost profits from film adaptations based on “The Grapes of Wrath” and “East of Eden.” She argued that her mother, Elaine Steinbeck, had left her with the rights to these works and that Thomas and Gail Steinbeck had interfered with plans to develop the films and had financially damaged the estate. A Los Angeles jury sided with Kaffaga and awarded her over $13 million in damages.
See Alexandra Alter, Steinbeck’s Heir Wins Lawsuit, The New York Times, September 7, 2017.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.) for bringing this article to my attention.