March 23, 2011 10:04am PT by Matthew Belloni
Charlie Sheen Denied in Effort to Stop Arbitration
Attorneys for Charlie Sheen were denied this morning by a Santa Monica judge in their effort to stop a private arbitration between Sheen, Warner Bros. and Two and a Half Men producer Chuck Lorre over the actor's firing from the show.
As we've reported, Warner Bros. initiated an arbitration proceeding against Sheen before the actor sued the studio and Lorre for $100 million. The private dispute resolution company JAMS has decided that it will move forward with the arbitration and its yet-to-be-appointed arbitrator will decide whether the arbitration clause in Sheen's contract provides that all disputes between him, Warners and Lorre will be hash out behind closed doors.
But Sheen wishes to press his claims in court, where the proceeding will be public. So his lawyer Marty Singer filed for an emergency temporary restraining order in Santa Monica courtroom this morning asking a judge to issue an injunction against JAMS from proceeding until the court determines whether Sheen's claims can move forward in the public venue.
The judge, after reading the lengthy court papers filed by the attorneys for Sheen, Warners and Lorre, has denied the injunction. The matter must be taken up by Judge Allan Goodman, who is presiding over the $100 million Sheen lawsuit.
Singer tells THR he will be back in court tomorrow morning to ask Goodman for an injunction.
"She denied the motion not on the merits but on a procedural issue," Singer says. "We will be back tomorrow, and we are confident in our position."
Lorre attorney Howard Weitzman tells THR the court's ruling "was not a surprise. The judge found no 'emergency' existed and ordered Mr. Sheen's attorneys to follow normal procedure in their attemps to halt the arbitration of this dispute."
Warner Bros. declined to comment.
The move is the latest in a series of legal maneuvers between the parties in the Sheen fracas. Sheen's arbitration clause in his contract with Warner Bros. is broad, but the actor does not have a contract with Lorre, whom he believes is responsible for his termination. Sheen would like to proceed with the court action against Lorre but JAMS has decided its arbitrator will decide the entire dispute unless a court tells it differently.