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Old 08-03-2013, 08:18 PM   #1
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Exclamation Don Johnsonís "Nash Bridges" $19M Payout Leads To Another Lawsuit

Don Johnsonís "Nash Bridges" $19M Payout Leads To Another Lawsuit
Friday August 2, 2013

Don Johnson may have walked away with $19 million, but the legal squabble over "Nash Bridges" continues. Today Rysher Entertainment, its present owners Qualia Capital and its past owners Mark Cuban and Todd Wagnerís 2929 Entertainment filed a complaint in LA Superior Court seeking indemnification and at least $48 million from Cox Media over the money they paid the actor earlier this year.

In their complaint for contractual indemnity and declaratory relief, the plaintiffs claim that when the Atlanta-based media conglomerate sold Rysher and the rights to the San Francisco-based cop series to 2929 affiliates in November 2001 it told the company that the rights to "Nash Bridges" also included $191 million in ďunrecouped production expenses.Ē

Cox allegedly also conveyed to the buyer that no ďcopyright claim would entitle any third party to revenues from 'Nash Bridges' until the gross receipts from the show exceeded the allowable deductions,Ē says the 11-page filing.

What the plaintiffs say they didnít know is that Cox had written down $71.4 million in production costs before the sale. The very non-deductible production costs that a 2010 jury in Johnsonís 2009 lawsuit used in part to determine the profits that "Nash Bridges" made.

Awarded $23.2 million by the jury in 2010, Don Johnson Productions, which was a producer on the show during its 1996 to 2001 run on CBS, was also awarded 50% of the copyright to "Nash Bridges" and hence entitlement to syndication rights funds. At one point, Johnson was awarded over $52 million in the case though that was reduced to $15 million by a Court of Appeal panel in late 2012.

The plaintiffs in todayís complaint assert that if it hadnít been for that write-down the show wouldnít have been calculated to have made $30 million and they wouldnít have been liable to pay Johnson anything. The trio of media companies say that they repeatedly reminded Cox of its indemnity commitment as Johnsonís case made its way though the courts but the company refused to ďprovide either indemnification or a defense.Ē

The plaintiffs say that not only caused them to have to pony up to DJP but cost them $8.3 million in legal fees and other costs. In seeking a 7-day jury trial, Rysher Entertainment, Qualia Capital and 2929 Entertainment not only want damages but an order from the court that Cox breached its obligations.

Additionally, the trio wants indemnity for those legal fees, the $19 million judgment to Johnsonís company and ďat least $20.7 million in additional damages for future revenues due to DJP.Ē

At this point, Johnsonís initial case and its spinoff stand a good chance of lasting longer than the original five-year run of "Nash Bridges" itself.

The plaintiffs are represented by Hollywood heavyweight attorney Patricia Glaser as well as Joel Klevens from LA firm Glaser Weil Fink Jacobs Howard Avchen & Shapiro.

Thomas Melsheimer and Scott Thomas of Dallas-based Fish & Richardson also represent the trio of companies.
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Old 08-03-2013, 09:33 PM   #2
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It never ends, does it? The only happy ones are probably the lawyers!!
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