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Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usThe new movie "Stomp the Yard" which is based on Greek Letter Organizations tradition of Stepping [think Drumline meets You Got Served], ruffled the feathers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. and gained support by Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. but that has all been settled with the fraternity who threatened to sue the filmmakers...

In a statement from Alpha Phi Alpha's President, he says:

Previously, I disseminated a written notice of the Fraternity's objection to references to the Fraternity in the film "Stomp the Yard." The Fraternity made its concerns known to Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc., Screen Gems, Inc. and Rainforest Pictures. After several weeks of meaningful and productive discussions with the executive leadership of Sony and Screen Gems, the film has been revised to the satisfaction of the Fraternity. Sony and Screen Gems have also agreed to make a donation to the MLK Memorial Foundation.

The Fraternity raised its objections to the Film without regard to financial remuneration, but to protect its history and its legacy. The removal of all references, in the film, to the Fraternity is based in part on the fraternity's leadership insisting that we observe our written policies and internal protocols' regarding the commercial use of our symbols and marks.

Sony's decision to make a donation to the Washington DC MLK, Jr. Memorial Foundation Project, Inc., is very much appreciated, and helps to secure, in history, the legacy of our brother, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and helps to celebrate his selfless contributions to the fabric of America and the world. The construction of this memorial on the national mall is the only one dedicated to an African-American.

Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. was originally supposed to make an appearance in the film, including a scene with them doing a step routine. Unfortunately, there was conflict with the fraternity and the producers of the film over the unauthorized use of many of the fraternity's trademarks. This development is evidenced in the two versions of the trailer, one in which there is a scene clearly depicting the Alphas in organizational paraphernalia and colors and referring to themselves while stepping; and another (later) trailer where the same scene is shown but the same Alpha steppers are clearly wearing plain black shirts and no dialogue is heard as they step (This scene was probably edited in post production).

Interestingly, Will Packer (Producer) and Rob Hardy (Executive Producer) are members of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. all is well in Hollywood!