We all know This Is Spinal Tap as the mother and father of rock mockumentaries; the film, released 33 years ago, helped to establish a new standard within rock music that didn't require bands to appear "cool". As is dutifully stated in the 1996 documentary about grunge, Hype!, the film celebrated a certain "dumbness" that would set the tone for the emerging alternative/indie scene.

This is but a small aspect why the film and the soundtrack gained cult status over the years, so one would expect royalties from record sales to be huge, right? Wrong. At least according to Harry Shearer, one of the actors and scriptwriters, who has set up a website called Fairness Rocks to expose the fact that they've been told that global music sales of the film's soundtrack are of only $98 -- in 33 years.

The move comes in the aftermath of a lawsuit filed last October against StudioCanal (the successor in interest of Embassy Pictures, which originally released the film) and Vivendi, who owns the studio. The lawsuit - initially filed by Shearer (Rob Reiner, Christopher Guest and Michael McKean joined him later) - asked that StudioCanal terminate the copyright to This Is Spinal Tap so that the rights could be properly collected. Vivendi has since then made an attempt to try and dismiss the case.

If this all sounds strangely familiar to you, don't be alarmed: This Is Spinal Tap's case is yet another example of big corporations (be it labels or studios) swallowing artists' percentages while leaving them with little to no revenues from their own work. You can (and should) learn more about the process here.