I have confirmed with both Ellison’s and Niccol’s lawyers that the action has been dropped, and both sides have agreed to the following joint statement:
“After seeing the film In Time, Harlan Ellison decided to voluntarily dismiss the Action. No payment or screen credit was promised or given to Harlan Ellison. The parties wish each other well, and have no further comment on the matter.”
So there you have it. The lawsuit was originally sparked by what Ellison saw as similarities between the movie and his own story, “‘Repent, Harlequin!’ Said The Ticktockman”, namely the dystopian future in which people lived for a fixed amount of time, and that they could lose time if they violate anything. In the movie, time is literally money – everyone starts off with a fixed amount, and they earn more and pay for things with it. The movie struggled in theaters, however, grossing about $35 million domestically, and reaching only 38% on the Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer.