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Posts Tagged ‘Eriq Gardner’

Robin Thicke: ‘I Didn’t Do a Single Interview Last Year Without Being High’

ShutterstockRobinThickeJuly2013Hollywood Reporter legal eagle Eriq Gardner dubs it the “rock ‘n’ roll defense.” And certainly, the unsealed deposition obtained by the trade reporter backs up that great description.

Beating TMZ to the court docket punch, Gardner has pulled some wild quotes from Robin Thicke and “Blurred Lines” producer Pharrell Williams, as part of their ongoing legal dispute with the family of Marvin Gaye. The deposition of Thicke and Williams was taken in April:

Thicke states he hardly remembers his specific media comments [about "Blurred Lines"] because he “had a drug and alcohol problem for the year” and “didn’t do a sober interview.” In fact, when he appeared on Oprah Winfrey’s show with his young son and talked about how weird it was to be in the midst of a legal battle with the family of a legendary soul singer who “inspires almost half of my music,” Thicke admits he was drunk and taking Norco — “which is like two Vicodin in one pill,” he says.

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Tom Freston, Shane Smith Talk About Their Billion-Dollar VICE Enterprise

Right off the THR print magazine Q&A bat, VICE founder Shane Smith and his main backer Tom Freston spin a very enviable privately owned narrative. Smith tells senior writer Eriq Gardner that the multi-media guerilla operation currently has 1,250 full-time employees/4,000 contributors in 34 different countries, while Freston boasts that VICE is already on an audience-engagement par with MTV, SNL and Rolling Stone magazine.

We’re not sure about that last part, but there’s no denying that with VICE’s HBO documentary series debuting tonight at 11 p.m. and featuring a first episode that was cleverly shared earlier this week on YouTube, VICE’s bodacious brand will only be further enhanced. It can also be argued that nothing recently compares to the free-publicity juggernaut VICE triggered by taking Dennis Rodman and three Harlem Globetrotters to North Korea.

In a separate Web-only Q&A with Erin Carlson, Smith clarifies that VICE did not smuggle the basketball players into the DPRK and says the ensuing media circus was actually cause for great concern:

We were really worried… Rodman was only there for two days and we were there for 10 days and our team was on the ground shooting. And we know how crazy the North Koreans are and how easily they’ll sort of put someone away so we were very nervous.

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THR Esq. Reporter Cries Foul Over Radar Online Travolta Item

Late yesterday afternoon, Hollywood Reporter senior editor Eriq Gardner posted a typically well-researched update about the lawsuit brought against John Travolta by a Royal Caribbean cruise ship male attendant. A California federal judge has rejected the actor’s attempts to send the matter to arbitration based on the ticketed-transaction nature of the trip.

This morning, a staff-bylined item on Radar Online covers the same territory, without any hat tip or credit to Gardner. More egregiously, there is at least one sentence in the Radar blurb that appears to be a verbatim-lift from the THR end. Can’t blame Gardner for being a little peeved.

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Anita Busch vs. Michael Ovitz Business Still Lingering

In the spring of 2008, former CAA kingpin Michael Ovitz answered an odd-sounding question in an LA courtroom. It was during the trial of now incarcerated former PI Anthony Pellicano and went like this with defense attorney Chad Hummel, who was representing an LAPD sergeant:

Hummel: Did you ever hire Mr. Pellicano to put a fish on Anita Busch’s car?
Ovitz: Absolutely not.

Five years later, despite that denial, Busch and Ovitz are still legally entangled in a civil lawsuit. Per a THR Esq. update by Eriq Gardner, Ovitz is asking for “sanctions against Busch, summary judgment in the lawsuit on the basis that her claims are time-barred and the right to learn through discovery what else Busch was working on at the time in question.”

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Mediaite’s Dan Abrams Fires Back at THR Report*

Exhibit A is today’s Hollywood Reporter item by Eriq Gardner titled “Fashion Photographer Sues Mediaite Over Photographs of Kate Moss’ Sister.” Exhibit B is a response to that article on Mediate from site owner Dan Abrams.

Under the headline “Getting Sued Sucks, But Dealing with a Shady, Hollywood Reporter ‘Journalist’ is Worse,” Abrams bemoans the fact that Gardner went ahead and published the story in the middle of seeking official comment. An email request came in to Abrams a half-hour before the story went live, but some subsequent, more detailed correspondence took place about a half-hour after publication. Writes Abrams:

The Hollywood Reporter story was riddled with errors because Gardner apparently wanted to get this story up quickly, rather than get the story right. Ah, the sweet revenge on the legal analyst.

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Vampire Movie Stinker Bleeds Into California Courtroom

The numbers for 2009 R-rated comedy flop Transylmania are truly frightening.

Per a Hollywood, Esq. write-up by Eriq Gardner, the film garnered a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a wide release per-screen average of $262. In the end, $22 million in financing delivered around $100,000 in return revenue, so it’s not surprising there is now a lawsuit:

After a meeting in Toronto, the plaintiffs [Third Eye Capital Corporation, Strative Capital] agreed to a loan agreement of $11,745,000 to finance P&A, plus an optional $2 million increase… Then, allegedly came the requests for more money.

In September 2009, the directing team of David and Scott Hillenbrand asked for an additional $2 million, citing competition from another film (Armored), media buy opportunities and the possibility of “huge” network endorsements… In total, during the final six months of 2009, the plaintiffs say they advanced $21,745,000.

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Report: Marilyn Monroe Hologram Being Readied for Year-End Concert Appearance

In this 50th anniversary year of Marilyn Monroe’s death, the Hollywood icon is apparently being engineered to appear in the same way that the late Tupac Shakur did at Coachella. Per a report in the June 8 print issue of The Hollywood Reporter from senior writer Eriq Gardner:

The Hollywood Reporter has learned that a “live” Monroe concert is being planned to take place before year’s end with the working title “Virtual Marilyn Live – A Musical Celebration of the Birth of the Pop Icon.”

The concert, which has yet to secure a venue (organizers also plan to stream it on the web), will feature the projected blond bombshell singing and interacting alongside live music stars. Becky Altringer, managing director and co-founder of Digicon Media, the company doing the planning, says the event will employ the technology used at Coachella.

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Judge to Entourage Plaintiff Johnny Bananas: You Slipped Up

The lawsuit was laughable from the start. MTV The Real World: Key West participant John Devenanzio claimed that an animated-show-within-a-show plotline of HBO’s Entourage, featuring Kevin Dillon’s character Johnny Drama as the voice of monkee Johnny Bananas, caused him emotional distress.

Creative distress, maybe. But as it merited to be, THR Esq. contributor Matthew Belloni Eriq Gardner reports today that a New York judge mercifully threw out this nicked nickname claim last week. Albeit on a technicality:

The episodes in question started airing on Aug. 15, 2010, and Devenanzio didn’t bring the claim until Oct. 3, 2011. The one-year statute of limitations window had closed, and so the judge finds the lawsuit to be less “Johnny Bananas” and more “Johnny Rotten.”

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Original Hawaii Five-O Talent Agent Files Suit Against CBS

From “book ‘em, Danno” to “sue ‘em, Litto.” That is essentially where an original stakeholder in the Hawaii Five-O franchise has progressed, via a lawsuit filed Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court.

THR senior editor Eriq Gardner has the details and full PDF complaint. The somewhat delayed timing of talent agent George Litto’s $10 million-plus legal maneuver has a lot to do with the fact that Rose Freeman, the widow of Hawaii Five-O creator Leonard Freeman, passed away in March. This reportedly left Litto as the sole manager of the Freeman estate company at the center of the dispute. Per Gardner:

Litto alleges he was cut out of the [TV series] success and even threatened with litigation if he contacted CBS… Since the series is reportedly a “cash cow” for CBS, he adds had the 1974 deal not been amended, it would have allegedly resulted in “massive profits” of millions of dollars to the company he set up with Rose.

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Hollywood, Esq. Columnist Eriq Gardner Gets THR Promotion

We told you a few weeks ago about the foreign posting of Hollywood Reporter New York bureau chief George Szalai. He in fact officially starts his new duties as London-based international business editor for the publication this week.

To help fill the Manhattan gap created by Szalai’s transatlantic move, THR has rewarded Eriq Gardner, the hard-working and often headline-grabbing contributor to the publication’s Hollywood, Esq. legal column, with the full-time position of senior editor. From today’s announcement:

A contributor to The Hollywood Reporter since 2007, Gardner has been the primary writer of Hollywood, Esq., a Webby Award-winning entertainment law blog launched in 2008 by THR news director Matthew Belloni and Gardner. The site has been recognized as one of the best law blogs by the American Bar Association.

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