The initial suit may have been severely trimmed, but the multimillion-dollar lawsuit against SAG-AFTRA by former SAG president Ed Asner and the 15 members of the self-titled United Screen Actors Committee now has a trial date: June 24, 2014. District Judge Manuel Real set the date today (read it here), 10 days after the federal judge granted SAG-AFTRA’s motion to dismiss large portion of the suit over $130 million in allegedly improperly dispersed foreign residuals. The plaintiffs first filed their suit on May 24. The union has called the claims “completely without merit” and a “virtual verbatim restatement” of the 2007 class action by Ken Osmond of Leave It To Beaver fame and other actors accusing SAG of not properly paying out $8.1 million in overseas royalties. That case was resolved in 2010 with a settlement. Still, Judge Real did not cut residuals from the current case and has given three of the original 16 plaintiffs who opted out of the Osmond settlement the right to move forward on unpaid claims. The judge also kept the name of the union’s Executive Director David White and his past associations with a convicted fraudster in the suit, something SAG-AFTRA sought to strike. Plaintiff’s lawyer Helena Wise said last week that she also is thinking about launching an action of breach of fiduciary duty and corruption against various union executives including White and general counsel Duncan Crabtree-Ireland. The union is represented by Robert A. Bush, Jason Wojciechowski, Ira Gottlieb and Julie Gutman Dickinson of Glendale firm Bush Gottlieb Singer Lopez Kohanski Adelstein & Dickinsonare.
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