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Posts Tagged ‘Marvin Putnam’

Cussler/Anschutz Trial Draws to Close

And the LA Times’ Glenn Bunting has been there almost every step of the way, cataloging the accusations, arguments and vitriol – much of it out of the official public eye. During his closing arguments, Clive Cussler‘s lawyer Betram Fields drew sharply contrasting portraits of two entertainment titans who have spent millions waging a fierce legal battle over the film “Sahara.” Cussler, said Fields, took his lumps. “You really got to know him,” Fields told the jury of nine women and three men. “He sat here and he took it. Yes, he has a bad memory. Yes, sometimes he struggles for words. I think you will conclude he is not an evil man.” Unlike Philip Anschutz, who never attended the trial and failed to “take the heat of cross-examination.” “Mr. Anschutz has never been here. He never took the stand. [Yet] it is Mr. Anschutz that wants you to enrich him at Mr. Cussler’s expense.”

Anschutz’s lead attorney, Marvin Putnam, is scheduled to deliver his summation today in Los Angeles County Superior Court. “In Mr. Fields’ opening, he claimed Mr. Cussler is a man who means what he says and says what he means,” Putnam said. “Now, at the end of the trial, Mr. Fields had to admit that remotely wasn’t the case. He was left to beg the jury to not do any further damage to his client’s already tattered reputation.”

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More Cussler/Anschutz Tidbits

The LA Times’ Glenn Bunting continues to report on developments from the Clive Cussler/Philip Anschutz dogfight over the mess that was the 2005 movie SAHARA. Karen Baldwin, executive producer of the movie, testified that a former top executive at Paramount Pictures deliberately misled Cussler by saying the studio “loved” his screenplay when it did not. “They lied to [Cussler] so they didn’t have to have an argument with him,” Baldwin said in a video deposition played in the courtroom.

Baldwin spent a second day on the witness stand facing hostile questioning from Cussler’s attorney. Bertram Fields sought to portray Baldwin as an untrustworthy producer who repeatedly lied during the development phase of the film. She is expected to resume her testimony this morning in the downtown courtroom of Superior Court Judge John P. Shook. Lawyers for Anschutz criticized Fields for attempting to “sully” Baldwin’s reputation as part of an effort to shift the jurors’ attention away from the facts of the case. “He is trying to make Ms. Baldwin the scapegoat for all of the bad actions of Mr. Cussler,” Marvin Putnam, a lawyer on Anschutz’s team from O’Melveny & Myers, said in an interview.

But Fields said Baldwin’s behavior undermined the claim that Cussler was “difficult and disruptive” during the development of SAHARA. “The real disruption to the movie was the breathtaking duplicity of Karen Baldwin telling one person one thing and another person another thing,” Fields said. “I can’t help it if she has no credibility.”