Freelance journalist Dominic Patten is covering the trial for Deadline.
UPDATE, 1:05 PM: Closing arguments have concluded and now it’s up to the judge to decide who wins and loses. But don’t expect a decision anytime soon as Matz told the jam-packed courtroom at the end of session today that “it is going to be some time before I can turn back to this”.
PREVIOUS, 12 PM: Hollywood Foreign Press Association lawyer Dan Petrocelli said that Dick Clark Productions’ amendment to an agreement about TV rights to the Golden Globes “enslaved the HFPA”. The words came during closing arguments today in the trial between DCP and the HFPA over those TV rights. Citing a 1993 perpetuity amendment at the heart of the two-week trial, Petrocelli said that “12 words changed the entire course of history between the two parties.” DCP, said the lawyer, added the language in 1993 in a “sloppy” and “dirty way”. He dismissed “a lack of candor” in the testimony of former DCP president Fran La Maina and former HFPA president Mirjana Van Blaricom as “severing off” key evidence around the amendment.
In his turn at the podium, DCP lawyer Marty Katz noted testimony about missing minutes and destroyed recording at the HFPA and asked the court to see the case “through the lens of 1993, not the lens of 2010 … when the Globes had become much more valuable”. It is also vital, Katz said in regard to the ’93 amendment, that “Dick Clark was always looking for some end-of-deal protection”, and that was the main reason behind the amendment.
Lawyers from both sides, acting upon the guidelines issued yesterday by Judge A. Howard Matz, had 90 minutes to present closing arguments. The judge, who interrupted both lawyers with questions during the morning session, will then take the case for consideration in the non-jury trial. His decision, which likely will result in appeals, could come in days or weeks.
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