Like many a good courtroom drama, they’ve reached a deal. More than a year after Julianna Margulies’ former managers sued The Good Wife star over nearly half a million in commission fees, D/F Management and the actress have reached a settlement. “The lawsuit involving our clients has been tentatively resolved to the mutual satisfaction of the parties,” said the lawyers today in a short joint statement . Typically, all details are being kept confidential on the agreement, which was reached earlier this week and still has to be formally approved by the court. Certainly part of that deal has to do with the fact that D/F’s initial filing for $420,000 was amended into millions of dollars when The Good Wife was sold into syndication this spring. The parties recently had a mediation session, one of their last scheduled meetings before the civil case was set to go to trial on January 8, 2014, having been pushed back from October because of the actress’ Good Wife schedule. This all started last July when Margulies’ long term former ICM agent Steve Dontanville and talent manager Frank Frattaroli claimed that the actress owed them for unpaid commissions from her Emmy-winning work on the hit CBS drama well as a spokesperson contract with L’Oreal. D/F signed the former ER star in February 2009. The Good Wife, in which Margulies plays lead character Alicia Florrick, debuted on September 22, 2009. The D/F duo, who based their sum on a 10% commission fee, also wanted the court to ensure that Margulies continues to pay them from all fees and contingent compensation from the show and the cosmetics contract in the future.
Like her on-screen character, Margulies was far from a passive party. She aggressively counterclaimed the D/F suit last fall. Part of Margulies’ return action was an insistence that her contract with D/F was merely an oral agreement. The logic being that because it was never in writing Margulies didn’t owe Dontanville and Frattaroli anything once she parted ways in April 2011. That didn’t pass the test with Judge Ernest Hiroshige, who was presiding over the case. He rejected her motion for summary judgement on June 25 which sped the case to trial. Not that Margulies’ lawyer left it at that. However their last move didn’t work out in their favor either. Earlier this month, the California Court of Appeal Second Appellate District rejected an emergency appeal by Margulies that it would do her harm to be a witness on the stand in any trial. D/F were represented by Matthew Rosengart of LA firm Greenberg Traurig. Sheldon Eisenberg and Ryan Fife of LA offices of Drinker Biddle & Reath represented Margulies and her Toast Productions.
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