After handing over a substantial amount of tax incentives only to watch Digital Domain falter, Florida is now taking action in an effort to recover tens of millions of dollars from the VFX company's former executives and board members, including leader John Textor. On Tuesday, the state filed an expansive, politically explosive fraud lawsuit that opens in an incendiary manner:
Hewlett-Packard has settled a trademark infringement suit regarding the name of a penis-measurement app sold in its app store.
Ernest Evans, the singer-songwriter who performed as Chubby Checker, sued HP last year for selling the app under the punning title "The Chubby Checker." In the settlement, filed July 22, HP admits no liability but agrees not to make use of the singer’s stage name, related trademarks or likeness.
It took a few years and was very expensive to defend, but 20th Century Fox has largely come out on top in a lengthy battle over the Alvin and the Chipmunks property.
When Bagdasarian Prods., the family company that licensed the Chipmunk characters, sued Fox in 2010, an incredible amount of money was on the line. A year earlier, Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel came out and grossed more than $443 million in worldwide box office. The Bagdasarians demanded half of the profits.
"You can never have too many friends," James Garner wrote to me on a picture of him as Bret Maverick when I asked for an autograph back in 1960. Garner indeed was a friend to actors in a way he might not have realized at the time: He was the rare thespian who dared engage in lawsuits with studios while he was a working actor.
Douglas Gotterba, who worked for John Travolta's aircraft company Alto in the 1980s, will get the opportunity to argue in a lawsuit that he holds no confidentiality duties to the actor. On Tuesday, the airline pilot was given the go-ahead sign by a California appeals court.
In the midst of a grueling fight over whether Warner Bros. and Saul Zaentz Co. have infringed copyright and breached contract by licensing Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit slot machines and video games, the estate of J.R.R. Tolkien will get to keep its lawyers.
Octavia Spencer, who won an Oscar for her role in The Help and who will next appear in Fox's Red Band Society, could soon be involved in a unique showdown spotlighting exactly how sponsors expect celebrities to use social media. The dispute concerns a $1.25 million deal the actress made to endorse the Sensa Weight Loss System. The relationship didn't work out, and now the parties are on the verge of a trial that will determine who is at fault.
Five months after the record company founded by American Idol creator Simon Fullerbrought a blockbuster lawsuit against Sony Music Entertainment for allegedly cheating artists such as Kelly Clarkson, Clay Aiken and Carrie Underwood, a New York federal judge is being asked to make an early determination about the claims.
The premise of 2013's The Purge — a box-office smash that grossed nearly $90 million worldwide — is this: In the very near future, the American government has established an annual 12-hour period where all crime is legal, including murder and, presumably, copyright infringement. The sequel, The Purge: Anarchy, opened in theaters yesterday — and according to a complaint filed that same day in California federal court, the lawlessness hasn't been confined to the big screen.