The Estate vs HBO

ScreenOrigami

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">A big legal day: <br>The MJE vs. HBO [11.7.19] <br>* We have gotten both responses to HBO&#39;s appeal and today both sides will face off in court. <br><br>Robson vs. The MJE [11.7.19]<br>* The MJE should be responding today, will be interesting to see what they have to say.</p>&mdash; Rasheed (@rasheedKOPV) <a href="https://twitter.com/rasheedKOPV/status/1192430645273739264?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 7, 2019</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
 

myosotis

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From a fan in court today.... (via Twitter)

It's looking as if the judge will grant a 'stay' of this case, pending HBO's appeal. To be confirmed.......
 

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Official word on HBO case:<br>* Judge granted the motion to stay arbitration pending appeal.</p>&mdash; Rasheed (@rasheedKOPV) <a href="https://twitter.com/rasheedKOPV/status/1192536473842544640?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 7, 2019</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
 

Kingofpop4ever3000

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I knew that was going to happen. I just knew it. Now the Estate could have to wait at least another year to show the public what this mess is really about if they're ever able to at all.
 
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Charles Thomson shares what happened at the hearing yesterday. It&#8217;s a very long thread, so I&#8217;m only embedding the first Tweet here, if you want to head over to Twitter and read there, and I&#8217;m posting the entire thread in text form below.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">THREAD: Happened to be in town, so popped into the courthouse in downtown Los Angeles this morning, to sit in on the latest hearing in the Michael Jackson Estate's lawsuit against HBO over Leaving Neverland. This is a broad rundown of the latest. <a href="https://t.co/OYrjWquRJF">pic.twitter.com/OYrjWquRJF</a></p>&mdash; Charles Thomson (@CEThomson) <a href="https://twitter.com/CEThomson/status/1192634317937106944?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 8, 2019</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

THREAD: Happened to be in town, so popped into the courthouse in downtown Los Angeles this morning, to sit in on the latest hearing in the Michael Jackson Estate's lawsuit against HBO over Leaving Neverland. This is a broad rundown of the latest.

Jackson Estate is suing HBO over Leaving Neverland. Inadequate defamation laws typically leave the deceased & their reps with no recourse against unproven allegations, but the Estate says in this case HBO breached a non-disparagement clause in a contract over an old concert film.

HBO says the documentary is journalism and thus protected speech. Jackson Estate says it is not journalism and is in fact a deliberately deceptive piece of non-journalism.

Jackson Estate is fighting for public arbitration over the integrity of the show in order to prove this.

Judge George H Wu has dismissed HBO's claims that the contract is old and void, and has ruled in favour of the Estate's request for arbitration. HBO is appealing that ruling and requested a stay, pending that appeal.

Today's hearing was for a ruling on the stay.

This morning Wu handed down a tentative judgement granting HBO a stay, pending their appeal. The judgement suggested failure to do so posed a reasonable threat of 'irreparable harm' to HBO's first amendment right to freedom of speech.

Both sides then argued their positions.

Howard Weitzman, for the Estate, said: "In my opinion, you've taken a typical breach of contract case... [and] you're turning it into something it's not."

He questioned how HBO could reasonably claim 'irreparable harm' when it has continued airing the show after the ruling.

Judge Wu said he had already ruled on 'the merits' of the case when he agreed to send it for arbitration. Today, he said, "the question is whether I stay, pending an appeal... Your party sued to compel arbitration. I'm staying the arbitration that you have won."

Wu: "This case is, to my mind, quite unique. I've never seen anything quite like it before and of course, that makes for bad law."

Weitzman: "Well don't make any more bad law!"

Wu: "I like to create a trail of interesting bon mots for the Court of Appeal to consider."

Jonathan Steinsapir, for the Estate, said: "The idea that arbitration is irreparable harm has been rejected by every court to look at that."

He continued: "They gave you no law that says arbitration will be irreparable injury. Once you find a valid arbitration clause, the only job of a federal court is to send it to arbitration... Where is the evidence? It's their burden."

Judge Wu responded that the arbitration clause was in 'a 27-year-old contract that has nothing to do with the documentary itself'.

But Steinsapir argued the age of the contract was irrelevant, as Wu had already ruled.

He said: "They used footage from that concert in the documentary... The idea that this does not relate to the contract is prejudging the merits of the arbitration."

Wu to Steinsapir: "I've made my ruling and the ruling is in your favour. But I have doubts about whether I was correct in making that ruling. I would kind of like the circuit to get involved."

Steinsapir told Wu he should not acquiesce to HBO's 'hand-waving' about the first amendment: "You've not seen a single piece of evidence that anybody has been chilled in their speech."

He continued: "Where is the evidence of this irreparable harm? Attorney argument is not evidence. They gave you no evidence. Not a single declaration. Nothing. You can't get an injunction or a stay without evidence."

He said the stay would significantly extend the litigation, arguing: "Their own cases make clear that speedy resolution is necessary. If their first amendment defences have any merit, they should want them resolved."

Bryan Freedman - who previously defended Eddie Cascio & James Porte in Vera Serova's class action lawsuit over allegedly fake songs on a posthumous Michael Jackson album - also appeared today on behalf of the Jackson Estate.

He said: "I understand you're unsure about the underlying issue & would like the 9th Circuit to give you some direction, but you can't disregard the standards for irreparable harm & that's what's been done here. You provide no reason at all why HBO would suffer irreparable harm."

Wu said he didn't apply typical standards because it was 'not a typical arbitration situation'.

Freedman replied: "But how it arises and the substance of whether a 27yo contract is enforceable or not is not for Your Honour to decide."

Freedman: "We think it is a typical situation... [HBO] are big boys. They know what they are doing. They agree to terms. It's a simple breach of contract case. For the court to say it's untypical doesn't make any sense."

Freedman argued there was no legal reason why the non-disparagement clause should hold more or less weight than any other clause, saying that if HBO today breached the copyright terms of the same document, it would be an open and shut matter.

Freedman suggested Wu was aiding the defence and delaying the case.

He said: "It's only unusual because you've made suggestions for them to take. They did not file a SLAPP motion. Your Honour suggested they file a SLAPP. Now they want to take it to the Court of Appeal."

He continued: "What's irreparable harm is the harm to us in not being able to put forth our case to an arbitrator. You're going to make us delay over 30 months before we even get a selection of an arbitrator. Arbitration is supposed to be a process that's speedy."

Wu replied: "But ultimately, you are looking for money, which is not irreparable harm when it has been delayed."

Wu then invited Daniel Petrocelli to speak for HBO. He argued the 'irreparable harm' was that 'first amendment interests are threatened in multiple ways'.

Petrocelli said the appeal was unusually significant as in most similar cases, 'the ultimate question to be decided by the 9th Circuit [is] whether it proceeds in arbitration or in court'. But in this case, a successful appeal would end the whole lawsuit.

He said: "Pending the outcome of this appeal, the case may be over once and for all."

He then argued the contract was void: "When a contract is over and it's been over for 27 years, you can't invoke the arbitration provision in that contract."

Freedman replied: "The contract is not over. It exists. Because a contract is dated 27 years ago, does not terminate the contract. The contract continues to this day."

Wu said although he'd let Petrocelli voice that argument, he was 'not concerned with the merits' at this stage.

Wu: "I'm just considering whether or not there's a basis to grant the motion for a stay... A serious first amendment issue puts it into a potential irreparable harm situation."

Wu concluded: "I'm not here to enforce contracts. I'm here to do justice and follow the law as I see it. In terms of whether or not to grant the motion for a stay, I'm following the law as I see it... I will make my tentative judgement my final judgement."

Thus concluded the hearing.

I was sat quite far back in the courtroom and straining to hear at times, so some quotes may be inexact. I'm sure some helpful person will make an official transcript available soon enough.

Bit of a busman's holiday, but nice to be back in court.
 
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Thriller_MJ

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It sounds like with Wade & James appeal, that granting HOB "stay" would mean having to deal with both cases at the same time.
 

myosotis

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Judge pauses arbitration order in Michael Jackson Estate v HBO dispute

The Californian judge overseeing a dispute between broadcaster HBO and the Michael Jackson estate has agreed to pause an order forcing the matter into arbitration pending the former&#8217;s appeal to America&#8217;s Ninth Circuit court.

The Jackson estate sued HBO back in February over the media firm&#8217;s airing of &#8216;Leaving Neverland&#8217;, the headline-grabbing documentary that put the spotlight back on allegations of child abuse made against the late musician by Wade Robson and James Safechuck.

The lawsuit centres on a 1992 contract between Jackson and HBO signed when the latter broadcast footage of the former&#8217;s live shows. The contract included a clause in which HBO promised to never &#8220;disparage&#8221; the musician, a commitment the estate claims the broadcaster breached by airing &#8216;Leaving Neverland&#8217;.

As the dispute progressed, the estate filed a motion seeking to force the matter to arbitration, rather than a proper court hearing. HBO opposed that move by filing what is known in American legal circles as an anti-SLAPP motion, basically seeking to stop arbitration on free speech grounds.

However, judge George H Wu said he couldn&#8217;t find any previous relevant precedent to support the idea that HBO could avoid arbitration by citing free speech rights under the First Amendment of the US Constitution.

This meant that he was prone to support the estate&#8217;s motion to force the whole matter to an arbitration hearing. However, he conceded that this was a very unusual case that could probably do with the input of a higher court.

HBO&#8217;s subsequent decision to take the case to the Ninth Circuit appeals court was, therefore, unsurprising. Even though the estate declared that this was a &#8220;bogus appeal&#8221; from a broadcaster keen to pursue every legal technicality to avoid scrutiny of its &#8220;shoddy journalism&#8221;.

Wu has now agreed to stay his earlier order requiring arbitration, allowing HBO to proceed with its appeal. The estate tried to persuade the judge to keep said order in place on the basis that this was, in fact, a simple contractual dispute that HBO was deliberately trying to complicate.

However, the judge did not concur, saying that he felt this case did raise some tricky First Amendment free speech issues on which there was little precedent. According to Law360, Wu added: &#8220;This case is to my mind quite unique. I&#8217;ve never seen anything like it&#8221;.

He then noted that he looked forward to the Ninth Circuit offering its opinions on what should be done in a dispute like this one.

https://completemusicupdate.com/art...rder-in-michael-jackson-estate-v-hbo-dispute/

Note: ''As the dispute progressed, the estate filed a motion seeking to force the matter to arbitration, rather than a proper court hearing''

This is not true. The arbitration clause is part of the original contract with HBO.
 
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myosotis

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From fans on Twitter (With many thanks) :

The appeals process has already begun.

HBO's opening brief is due on 29/01/20.
Estate answering brief due 28/ 02 /20

Edited to add:
A lawyer who assists fans on Twitter has said:
Those dates won't hold unfortunately. Appeals courts automatically give two week extensions if you request by phone AND expect parties to agree to a little more time. It's just the way it works ... I'd guess briefing is done some time in June
 
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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">RE MJ Estate v HBO. Judge Wu&#39;s explanation as to why he ordered the stay pending appeal. <a href="https://twitter.com/Hammertonhal?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Hammertonhal</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/TruthAndLaw8?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TruthAndLaw8</a> <a href="https://t.co/zalCdWDJHo">https://t.co/zalCdWDJHo</a></p>&mdash; andjustice4some (@andjustice4some) <a href="https://twitter.com/andjustice4some/status/1192916962977832960?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 8, 2019</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
 

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I don't understand the judge's reasoning at all. In my opinion, he should have really thought about the overall issues with this before he gave the initial order allowing the arbitration. I can understand how the Estate thought he was favoring HBO. Now that HBO are making an even bigger stink about effectively being made to put up or shut up, he's having doubts that he did the right thing and he puts the lawsuit on hold. If he didn't know what to do, he should have asked for advice from another judge in the first place. I wouldn't fault him for that. But now the Estate has to wait. And they could still lose the case on top of that. This is ridiculous.
 
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Mikky Dee

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I don't understand the judge's reasoning at all. In my opinion, he should have really thought about the issues with this before he gave the initial order allowing the arbitration. I can understand how the Estate thought he was favoring HBO. Now that HBO are making a even bigger stink about effectively being made to put up or shut up, he's having doubts that he did the right thing and he puts the lawsuit on hold. This is ridiculous.

Well, it seems logical to me and I actually thought all along that the Judge would do this. HBO has appealed the original decision and the appeal has been granted, so arbitration can't be forced, until the appeal has run its course. The Judge has to operate within the parameters of the legal processes at work there.....I'd be blaming the US legal system, rather than the Judge, in this instance. It seems as though he is looking for assistance from the higher court, considering there are no precedents to work with.
 

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Just sound to me the judge is making sure his i's are dot and t's are cross within the law. The estate still have a great chance of winning. Waiting is not always a bad thing. And it the meantime, We will see Wade/james case.
 

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True. I hate cliffhangers, though. I feel like the day I walked out of the movie theater after watching Kill Bill Vol. 1. :laughing:
 

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Unless I'm misunderstanding things (Heck, I probably am), I don't understand HBO's first amendment argument. Isn't it about the contract and what's actually in the contract? If they breached it, it kind of makes the argument about free speech a moot point.
 

ScreenOrigami

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That&#8217;s why they keep arguing that the contract has somehow expired. Doesn&#8217;t make any sense either. They&#8217;re just buying time to launch HBO Max without bad press.
 

Mikky Dee

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Unless I'm misunderstanding things (Heck, I probably am), I don't understand HBO's first amendment argument. Isn't it about the contract and what's actually in the contract? If they breached it, it kind of makes the argument about free speech a moot point.

Yeah, they're clutching at straws, in my opinion.
 

ScreenOrigami

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Re MJ Estate v HBO: Both parties are required to decide whether they want to enter mediation (settlement) talks. One or both parties declined, so there will be NO settlement in this case. <a href="https://t.co/15Wth2ReNN">https://t.co/15Wth2ReNN</a></p>&mdash; andjustice4some (@andjustice4some) <a href="https://twitter.com/andjustice4some/status/1196929016680239104?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 19, 2019</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
 

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ScreenOrigami;4274740 said:
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Re MJ Estate v HBO: Both parties are required to decide whether they want to enter mediation (settlement) talks. One or both parties declined, so there will be NO settlement in this case. <a href="https://t.co/15Wth2ReNN">https://t.co/15Wth2ReNN</a></p>— andjustice4some (@andjustice4some) <a href="https://twitter.com/andjustice4some/status/1196929016680239104?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 19, 2019</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Pfft! The Estate is gonna refuse settlement. We all knew they’d refuse to and stick to their guns.
 

myosotis

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From fans on Twitter (With many thanks) :

The appeals process has already begun.

HBO's opening brief is due on 29/01/20.
Estate answering brief due 28/ 02 /20

From fans on Twitter. HBO are (as expected) pushing court dates back.:

- HBO have requested to push back the date of their opening brief. This will now open on 28th Feb 20, and the answering brief from the Estate is due on 30 March 20.

- Optional HBO response is then due 21 days later.
 

terrell

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So this is suppose to be heard again on Feb 28, 2020 of next week?
 

NatureCriminal7896

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I was just gonna reply to this thread. yeah. they said on the 28th. ugh. here we go again. they better do this hearing. i'm getting tired of them pushing them back. it's time to stop and get it over with.
 

ozemouze

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Reminder: HBO has until Friday, 2/28 to file their opening brief in the appeal of the ruling for arbitration for the Michael Jackson Estate. Estate has 30 days to reply. HBO will have another 21 days to reply to Estate's reply. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MJEstatevHBO?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MJEstatevHBO</a> <a href="https://t.co/z8yyC8Y2ha">pic.twitter.com/z8yyC8Y2ha</a></p>&mdash; andjustice4some (@andjustice4some) <a href="https://twitter.com/andjustice4some/status/1231738124847337474?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">February 24, 2020</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Had to laugh at this tweet though:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Hahahahaha. No, it won't work that way. HBO reply, Estate reply, HBO reply, court. Punchy thinks this will be decided by the fall of 2020. Then we head back to arbitration.</p>&mdash; andjustice4some (@andjustice4some) <a href="https://twitter.com/andjustice4some/status/1231977159188598784?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">February 24, 2020</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
 

myosotis

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HBO Opening Brief:

https://www.scribd.com/document/449431920/HBO-Opening-Brief-for-Appeal

With many thanks to fans on Twitter.

Main arguments (against arbitration) are:

A. That the District court erred when it concluded that a valid arbitration agreement exists, even though the 1992 agreement and all its provisions were fully performed decades ago:

1. The parties' full performance of the 1992 Agreement discharged its obligations and extinguished its arbitration provision

2. The 1992 Agreement lacks any language, let alone 'unequivocal' language, establishing the arbitration provisions' perpetual survival.

3. The Estate's complaints about 'Leaving Neverland' fall outside the scope of the 1992 agreement's arbitration provision.

B. The District Court erred by concluding that it was prohibited from considering the 1992 Agreement as a whole.

C. The parties' post -performance conduct further demonstrates that nothing remained of the 1992 Agreement, including the arbitration clause, in 2019.


Looking at some of the details, on p42 HBO says 'while the Estate acknowledged in its petition (for arbitration) that the law does not protect the deceased from defamation, in the next breath it declared that 'defamation is really the heart of the issue in this case'.

(So HBO are trying to say that this request for abitration on the grounds of the 1992 contract is a way of trying to get around the lack of a law on defamation for the deceased. I'm not sure that an underlying purpose for requesting arbitration would be a reason for denying arbitration.....)

On p41, HBO say that 'no-one notified HBO that Optimum Productions was stepping into TTC's shoes regarding any rights or obligations under the 1992 Agreement'.
(I suspect the Estate would say that OP didn't step into TTCs shoes- it was just a business follow on, and I doubt there is anything in the 1992 Agreement stating that either MJ or the Estate has to inform HBO of anything about their business set-up, post 1992)

on p38 HBO refers to a traditional principle that 'courts should not construe ambiguous writings to create lifetime promises'. It goes on to reassert that doing so will 'chill free speech'.

(I suspect that the Estate can argue that HBO freely, knowingly and willingly signed the contract, in order to secure the MJ concert performance rights...)

I think these are all HBO arguments that we have already seen in this process.
 
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myosotis

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HBO Seeks Dismissal of Michael Jackson Estate&#8217;s Suit Over &#8216;Leaving Neverland&#8217;

HBO urged an appeals court on Friday to throw out litigation brought by the Michael Jackson estate over the 2019 documentary &#8220;Leaving Neverland.&#8221;

HBO and the Jackson estate have been locked in a legal war ever since the premium cable network agreed to run the documentary, which chronicles child sexual abuse allegations against Jackson.

.....................In an opening brief to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, HBO&#8217;s attorney, Theodore Boutrous, urged the court to reverse Wu&#8217;s ruling on the grounds that the contract had expired, and to order the case dismissed. He argued that HBO had aired the concert film &#8212; &#8220;Live in Bucharest&#8221; &#8212; exactly once, and that neither side had operated as though the contract were still in effect over the subsequent 27 years.

He noted, for instance, that Jackson&#8217;s attorneys had never updated the contact information for his attorneys and management firm, even though the attorneys no longer represent Jackson and the management firm no longer exists.

&#8220;In light of the contract as a whole, it would be unreasonable to interpret the non-disparagement sentence, which is collateral to the 1992 Agreement&#8217;s principal objective of a one-time-only exhibition of &#8216;Live in Bucharest,&#8217; to mean that the parties intended for HBO to waive its right to disseminate newsworthy allegations about Mr. Jackson for all time on any topic,&#8221; Boutrous wrote.

He also argued that the estate is essentially making a defamation claim, and trying to use the 1992 contract to get around the prohibition on bringing such claims on behalf of dead people.

&#8220;The petition in this case is a transparent effort to unlawfully punish &#8216;would-be critics&#8217; of public figures like Mr. Jackson who &#8216;may be deterred from voicing their criticism, even though it is believed to be true and even though it is in fact true*,'&#8221; Boutrous wrote, quoting from the Supreme Court&#8217;s decision in New York Times v. Sullivan, which sets a high bar for defamation claims against public figures.

The Jackson estate&#8217;s response is due on March 30.

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/hbo-seeks-dismissal-michael-jackson-024803821.html

*Boutros thereby showing that for HBO it IS all about defamation...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

(Note: It seems that this may be the same Theodore Boutros Jr who was/is on the legal team for Apple vs the US Dept. of Justice, when the DoJ requested a 'back door' to unlock iphones used by persons accused of crime. That case still appears to be ongoing, but I don't know if Boutros is still on the 'Apple' team.
https://www.thewrap.com/apple-lawyer-keeping-shooters-iphone-locked-is-first-amendment-right/

He seems also to be the Attorney for Ashley Judd vs Weinstein
https://www.ctvnews.ca/entertainmen...t-weinstein-1.4101619?cache=yes?clipId=104059

and for students (Vergara) vs California, where he failed to persuade the court that tenure rights for teachers should be removed.
https://www.scpr.org/news/2016/04/14/59624/appeals-court-overturns-lower-court-s-ruling-on-ca/ )
 
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PoP

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myosotis;4282687 said:
HBO Seeks Dismissal of Michael Jackson Estate&#8217;s Suit Over &#8216;Leaving Neverland&#8217;

HBO urged an appeals court on Friday to throw out litigation brought by the Michael Jackson estate over the 2019 documentary &#8220;Leaving Neverland.&#8221;

HBO and the Jackson estate have been locked in a legal war ever since the premium cable network agreed to run the documentary, which chronicles child sexual abuse allegations against Jackson.

.....................In an opening brief to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, HBO&#8217;s attorney, Theodore Boutrous, urged the court to reverse Wu&#8217;s ruling on the grounds that the contract had expired, and to order the case dismissed. He argued that HBO had aired the concert film &#8212; &#8220;Live in Bucharest&#8221; &#8212; exactly once, and that neither side had operated as though the contract were still in effect over the subsequent 27 years.

He noted, for instance, that Jackson&#8217;s attorneys had never updated the contact information for his attorneys and management firm, even though the attorneys no longer represent Jackson and the management firm no longer exists.

&#8220;In light of the contract as a whole, it would be unreasonable to interpret the non-disparagement sentence, which is collateral to the 1992 Agreement&#8217;s principal objective of a one-time-only exhibition of &#8216;Live in Bucharest,&#8217; to mean that the parties intended for HBO to waive its right to disseminate newsworthy allegations about Mr. Jackson for all time on any topic,&#8221; Boutrous wrote.

He also argued that the estate is essentially making a defamation claim, and trying to use the 1992 contract to get around the prohibition on bringing such claims on behalf of dead people.

&#8220;The petition in this case is a transparent effort to unlawfully punish &#8216;would-be critics&#8217; of public figures like Mr. Jackson who &#8216;may be deterred from voicing their criticism, even though it is believed to be true and even though it is in fact true*,'&#8221; Boutrous wrote, quoting from the Supreme Court&#8217;s decision in New York Times v. Sullivan, which sets a high bar for defamation claims against public figures.

The Jackson estate&#8217;s response is due on March 30.

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/hbo-seeks-dismissal-michael-jackson-024803821.html

*Boutros thereby showing that for HBO it IS all about defamation...

Pfft! Nope. Not gonna happen. You're days are numbered HBO!
 

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myosotis;4282687 said:
“The petition in this case is a transparent effort to unlawfully punish ‘would-be critics’ of public figures like Mr. Jackson who ‘may be deterred from voicing their criticism, even though it is believed to be true and even though it is in fact true*,'” Boutrous wrote, quoting from the Supreme Court’s decision in New York Times v. Sullivan, which sets a high bar for defamation claims against public figures.

The Jackson estate’s response is due on March 30.

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/hbo-seeks-dismissal-michael-jackson-024803821.html

*Boutros thereby showing that for HBO it IS all about defamation...

While I strongly disagree with HBOs lawyers choosing to assert that the allegations are true, rather than just allegations, I do have to say one thing about the comment added next to the asterisk.
By saying the allegations are true, Boutros is NOT "showing that for HBO it IS all about defamation". I say this for one reason...IF an allegation is true it is not defamation at all. In that case it is fact, even if people object to that. Of course in MJ's case we can prove categorically that several of the allegations are not true and so Boutros is in fact participating in the defamation even if he doesn't know it.
 

myosotis

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While I strongly disagree with HBOs lawyers choosing to assert that the allegations are true, rather than just allegations, I do have to say one thing about the comment added next to the asterisk.
By saying the allegations are true, Boutros is NOT "showing that for HBO it IS all about defamation". I say this for one reason...IF an allegation is true it is not defamation at all. In that case it is fact, even if people object to that. Of course in MJ's case we can prove categorically that several of the allegations are not true and so Boutros is in fact participating in the defamation even if he doesn't know it.

By saying the allegation 'Is true' (without any court decision) he IS defaming MJ. My opinion stands. :)

Defamation (sometimes known as calumny, vilification, libel, slander or traducement) is the oral or written communication of a false statement about another that unjustly harms their reputation and usually constitutes a tort or crime.
 
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