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Producer claims Donny & Marie Osmond pulled off a Vegas heist

Thu Oct 07, 2010 @ 11:46AM PST

By Eriq Gardner

A Las Vegas show producer has hurled some pretty outrageous claims at Donny and Marie Osmond.

The duo has developed a nice-guy-nice-gal reputation, but in a new lawsuit the producer of their Vegas stage production paints the couple as "underhanded, devious, fraudulent and greedy."

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Hollywood Docket: Anti-piracy pact released; Tivo patent reaffirmed; court sketch artist vs. ESPN

Thu Oct 07, 2010 @ 08:38AM PST
  • The full text of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement was published yesterday (here). Hollywood is supporting the measure, although it's clear that in order to win tech support, language regarding the liability of ISPs for copyright infringement was toned down. Also, missing from the nearly 40 countries on board with the deal is China, notorious for failing to control piracy.  [AP / Bloomberg]
  • The USPTO has reaffirmed the validity of Tivo's "time warp" patent, allowing it to further pursue litigation against companies like EchoStar, alleged to have violated the patent for digital video recorders. [DMW]
  • Taylor Swift has prevailed in a lawsuit against 16 individuals accused of selling counterfeit merchandise. [Tennessean]
  • A mother-daughter team of sketch artists is suing the AP, ESPN and other outlets for allegedly rebroadcasting or republishing their work without permission or compensation. The plaintiffs claim that ESPN used the sketches to illustrate on-air segments involving the cases of Tim Donaghy, Marion Jones and Plaxico Burress. [CNS]
  • Actor Brandon Eaton is suing the prop company that supplied the show "Miami Medical" with a cardiac defibrillator. According to the lawsuit, the company failed to inform the actors that the prop was a "real working device," so Eaton had electrical charges sent through his body. Yikes. [TMZ]

Bigamy investigation threatens TLC's 'Sister Wives'

Wed Oct 06, 2010 @ 07:08PM PST
By Matthew Belloni

Sisterwives Will a Utah district attorney spoil the polygamy party at TLC?

Only two weeks into the network's hit reality series "Sister Wives," the results of a felony bigamy investigation of the show's stars have been presented to the Utah County Attorney, who now must decide whether to file charges against Kody Brown and wives Mari, Janelle, Christine and Robyn.

Bigamy is a felony in Utah, where the Brown family lives and the show is set, carrying a possible three to five year sentence upon conviction. However, polygamists are rarely prosecuted without committing so-called "collateral" crimes like child abuse or welfare fraud, none of which yet has been alleged.

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Is this Katy Perry bikini photo worth millions?

Wed Oct 06, 2010 @ 08:45AM PST

By Eriq Gardner

214 EXCLUSIVE: Marvix Photo Inc., a celebrity photograph agency, has filed a lawsuit against Fanpop, the operator of a network of online fan clubs, for posting 21 copyrighted photos of Katy Perry on vacation in the Bahamas.

Marvix does business with various newspapers, television programs and magazines like US Weekly and People. The agency is claiming willful infringement in its lawsuit filed on Monday in federal court in California. It wants maximum statutory damages to the tune of $150,000 per infringement.

Added up, Marvix says it is entitled to a buxomly sum of $3.15 million from Fanpop for the alleged illicit reproduction of various Katy Perry photos, including the one seen here on the right.

This makes us wonder whether the biggest threat to paparazzi is not new laws teasing jail time for those photogs who recklessly chase chase down Hollywood glitterati, but rather the commercial harm of a copyright-disrespecting Internet. Hell, given the choice between strong copyright protection laws that protect their creative endeavors or weak copyright laws that might erode the value of paparazzi-stalking, which side would celebrities favor?

Hollywood Docket: McTiernan speaks; SAGWatch probe; Foo Fighter fake-sues Scissor Sister

Wed Oct 06, 2010 @ 08:43AM PST

  • "Die Hard" director John McTiernan, sentenced to a year in jail in connection with the Anthony Pellicano wiretapping scandal, breaks his silence in an interview with THR. He says he's not afraid of prison. [THR]
  • Oksana Grigorieva won't be going on Oprah to talk about her conflict with Mel Gibson, after her lawyer strongly advised her against doing so. [TMZ]
  • Meanwhile, will Gibson have to pay his future ex-wife Robyn after squandering his good will? Not in California, where good will laws only apply to businesses. She can still argue that Mel owes her money for hurting the value of his Icon Prods. [Above the Law]
  • AFTRA is investigating the anonymously-run website SAGWatch, upon allegations that the Hollywood labor news aggregator is being run by a AFTRA board member. [THR]
  • The FCC has granted the Tennis Channel's request to review a complaint that Comcast has discriminated against the network. [LAT]
  • An Illinois judge has dismissed without prejudice one of the lawsuits where a porn company is suing hundreds of suspected file-sharers, ruling that defendants were misjoined together in a single suit. [Slyck]
  • Dave Grohl is fake-suing the Scissor Sisters and its management for $75 million after the band's singer exposed one of his testicles at a recent gig. [Billboard] The announcement of a lawsuit comes adorned with a video. Do fake lawsuits make hot viral activity? We'll see. Here's the clip:

Will Paramount be liable for a 'Transformers 3' stunt gone bad?

Tue Oct 05, 2010 @ 05:48PM PST

By Matthew Belloni

Cedillo,gabriela The "Transformers 3" extra who suffered brain damage in a botched stunt on location in Indiana has now sued Paramount Pictures for negligence. Is the studio responsible for what was clearly a terrible accident?

Today's lawsuit claims that Paramount and the film's location managers breached a duty of care to Gabriela Cedillo, 24, by, among other things, failing to properly weld a thick slab of metal that became dislodged from a stunt car, crashing into a another car driven by Cedillo and slicing her skull.

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Michael Bay gets apology, dismissal of battery lawsuit

Tue Oct 05, 2010 @ 04:48PM PST

By Matthew Belloni

Bay,michael A Ventura County lawyer has learned that you do NOT screw around with Michael Bay.

Six weeks after including the "Transformers" director as a defendant in a pistol-whipping battery lawsuit stemming from a fight at a Hollywood club, attorney Christine Renshaw of Renshaw & Associates has put her tail between her legs, dismissed the case against Bay and issued a written apology to him. Ouch.

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Judge: Food Network's 'Private Chefs' can air as planned

Tue Oct 05, 2010 @ 12:50PM PST

By Matthew Belloni

Privatechefsofbeverlyhills EXCLUSIVE: A federal judge has denied a preliminary injunction against Food Network's "Private Chefs of Beverly Hills" that could have stopped the show's second season before its Oct. 12 premiere.

As we've reported, a company called Private Chefs Inc. sued Food Network in August claiming the show violates its trademarks and breaches an implied contract. Private Chefs claims that in 2002 its president pitched a similar show about chefs-to-the-stars to Food Network.

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Meet the billionaire the entire TV industry is suing

Tue Oct 05, 2010 @ 12:50PM PST

By Eriq Gardner

_45314403_alki Get ready for a spectacular legal brawl -- the big TV networks have just picked a fight with an eccentric billionaire.

On Friday, CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against, which offers subscribers who pay $9.99 a month access to live high definition feeds of TV online. The suit follows a battle with another online streaming outfit ivi, Inc., dual moves that indicate the major broadcast networks are starting to get aggressive in policing the Internet for unauthorized transmissions.

But what makes this new lawsuit one to watch is the identity of the defendant.

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Hollywood Docket: 'Hobbit' mediation; McTiernan sentenced; 'Real Housewives' heist

Tue Oct 05, 2010 @ 11:26AM PST
  • New Zealand really wants that labor dispute over "The Hobbit" to be settled. In an effort to keep production of the film going in its country, it has deployed two senior ministers to mediate the dispute between Warner Bros. and a local union. [THR]
  • "Die Hard" director John McTiernan was sentenced to a year in prison for lying to federal authorities regarding his role in the wiretapping case of Anthony Pellicano. [LAT]
  • The FCC has made a second information request over Comcast's proposed acquisition of NBCU. [THR]
  • A full 11-judge panel at the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has voted to rehear claims brought by two individuals who alleged NBCU stole an idea for the show "Ghost Hunters" on the SyFy Channel. Previously, a three-judge panel for the 9th Circuit upheld a lower court's dismissal of the case. [CNS]
  • Apple is challenging a $625 million jury verdict that found the company had infringed three patents relating to how digital media files are displayed on the iPod, the iPhone and Macintosh. It was the fourth-largest patent verdict in US history. [NYT]
  • The crew behind "The Real Housewives of New York City" were so glued to the women cast-members at a hotel that they failed to guard the Bravo van parked outside. Thieves struck and robbed the production of $30,000 worth of equipment. [NYP]

The Hollywood Reporter
The Hollywood Reporter, Esq. blog focuses on how the entertainment and media industries are impacted and influenced by the law. It is edited by Matthew Belloni with contributions from veteran legal reporter Eriq Gardner and others. Before joining The Hollywood Reporter, Belloni was a lawyer at an entertainment litigation firm in Los Angeles. He writes a column for THR devoted to entertainment law. Gardner is a New York-based writer and legal journalist. Send tips or comments to [email protected]

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