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Appeals Court Affirms $12M Award To ‘Crash’ Director Paul Haggis, Brendan Fraser & Producers

By | Monday February 3, 2014 @ 6:51pm PST

DJP LEGAL BADGEA nearly seven-year lawsuit over profits from the Oscar-winning Crash finally might be putting on the brakes. Late last week, a three-judge appeals court panel found in favor of the 2004 film’s director/co-writer Paul Haggis, co-writer/producer Bobby Moresco, producer Mark Harris and actor Brendan Fraser and Celebrating Haitian Heroes Of The St. Luke Foundationconcurred with a December 2011 lower court ruling that awarded the four $12 million. “In a bench trial the court found for the plaintiffs and awarded them over $12,000,000 in damages and prejudgment interest,” the 2nd Appellate Court said in its January 31 ruling (read it here). “We conclude that appellants have not carried their burden of showing prejudicial error, and we therefore affirm,” Judges Frances Rothschild, Jeffrey Miller and Victoria Chaney added. Since its wide release on May 6, 2005, Crash — which won Best Picture and two other Academy Awards has made more than $98 million worldwide.
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Will There Be Big Oscar Surprises Tonight? Don’t Hold Your Breath

By | Sunday February 26, 2012 @ 1:16pm PST
Pete Hammond

At various events and pre-Oscar parties this weekend I have heard over and over again the same line: “God,I just hope there are some surprises!” No matter what people seem to be personally rooting for, the one thing they really want are some good old-fashioned Oscar shockers in a year that doesn’t seem likely to have many, if any at all. That would mean anything but The Artist as Best Picture, maybe Gary Oldman or Demian Bichir as Best Actor or Glenn Close as Best Actress.  How about Max von Sydow upsetting fellow 82 year old Christopher Plummer in the Supporting Actor race or The Help’s Jessica Chastain upending her co-star, favored Octavia Spencer, for Supporting Actress. The one category that in recent years has been ripe for surprise is Best Foreign Language Film. In fact the last few winners in the category were not the betting favorites so this year any movie other than Iran’s A Separation would indeed qualify as a surprise. If you want to bet the longshot there, go with Canada’s poignant, crowd-pleasing Monsieur Lazhar, the kind of film the more conservative older voters who participate in the Foreign Language process (you have to prove you have seen all five nominees in a theatre to vote) have tended to go for in recent years. But I don’t expect we will be surprised in this category, or for that matter almost any other this year.

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Bob Yari Owes ‘Crash’ Participants $12M In Profits Dispute, Judge Rules

By | Tuesday December 20, 2011 @ 8:38pm PST

In a long-running dispute over profits from the Oscar-winning movie Crash, a Los Angeles Superior Court judge ruled that companies controlled by Bob Yari owe about $12 million to director/co-writer Paul Haggis, co-writer Bobby Moresco and Brendan Fraser a member of the large ensemble cast. Tuesday’s award follwed a July ruling by Judge Daniel Buckley that found Yari’s companies in breach of contract for failing to pay profits to the trio. Buckley determined Haggis, Moresco and Fraser should receive roughly $9 million in profits and $3 million in interest. Attorney for the Yari companies Behzad Nahai said he and his clients “respectfully but vehemently disagree” with the judge’s decision. He did not say whether Yari’s side would appeal. Among details noted by the judge were that Yari should not have charged the film $1,300 for his Oscar and Golden Globes tickets nor for his $40,000 sponsorship of the Independent Spirit and Gotham awards. In addition to suits filed over profit-sharing for Crash, producer Cathy Schulman filed suit accusing Yari of firing her in retaliation for his being denied a producer credit on the movie by the PGA which in turn resulted in Yari’s not making the cut as one of the winners of the movie’s Best Picture Oscar.

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