HOLLYWOOD, CA, May 16, 2011 – Judge Kevin Brazile of the Los Angeles Superior Court ruled Wednesday, May 11, 2011, in favor of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) in the action brought against it and President Philip Berk by their former outside publicist, Michael Russell (MRG-CINEPOINT/CASE #BC453017).
When the HFPA did not renew Russell’s contract, he sued the Golden Globes organization for defamation and interference with their ability to retain and recruit clients. These claims, the most critical of Mr. Berk personally, were stricken pursuant to the so-called anti-SLAPP law which protects the right to free speech.
According to the HFPA’s counsel, Joseph Campo of Lewis, Brisbois, Bisgaard & Smith, “As most of the remaining claims concern employment issues, we are confident that we will remove them by demurrer or motion for summary judgment. This baseless complaint will not reach the jury.”
About the Hollywood Foreign Press Association:
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) was founded in the 1940s by Los Angeles based overseas journalists who sought to bridge the international community with Hollywood. Today, members of the HFPA represent 55 countries with a combined readership of 250 million in some of the world’s most respected publications. Each year, the organization holds the third most watched awards show on television, the Golden Globe Awards®, which have enabled the organization to donate more than $12 million thus far to entertainment related charities and scholarship programs. For more information, please visit www.goldenglobes.org, and follow us on Twitter (@goldenglobes) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/goldenglobes) for exclusive celebrity videos and up to the minute Golden Globes news!
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Ken Sunshine/Michael Samonte
Sunshine, Sachs & Associates
|16th May 2011,|