Charlie Rose will be paying out more that $207,900 to interns who worked on his PBS show to settle a class action suit. The settlement, reported by The New York Times, was reached this week and will see Rose and his production company Charlie Rose Inc paying $1,100 each to a class of about 189 interns. This stems from an initial class action suit filed in the New York State Supreme Court by former Rose intern Lucy Bickerton on March 1. In that filing Bickerton, who interned on the Rose Show in 2007, said that despite New York law requiring unpaid internships to only be allowed in an educational context, the Charlie Rose Show “did not provide academic or vocational training.” From Bickerton’s descriptions, the interns essentially performed the duties of research assistants and production assistants, working up to 25 hours a week. The suit sought to get minimum wage for all of the Rose Show interns ”in an amount that cannot currently be ascertained but that readily exceeds $150,000.” READ MORE »
Alex Footman and Eric Glatt should not be allowed to enlarge their class action suit to include all Fox Entertainment Group interns, says Fox Searchlight. In a 24-page memorandum filed Wednesday in New York federal court (read it here), the studio claims that the request the former Black Swan interns’ made last month is speculative and not even plausible. Fox Searchlight did concede that former intern Eden Antalik could serve as a rep for interns in its NYC office. They did not do the same for Kanene Gratts, who served as an intern on (500) Days of Summer back in early 2008 in LA. Fox, who co-produced that film, claims that Gratts is time-barred under California law, which has a four-year statute of limitations.
A hearing in Manhattan on August 24 could significantly enlarge the class action suit two Black Swan interns brought last year against Fox Searchlight. In an order made public today (read it here), Judge William Pauley III has agreed to a conference next week on Alex Footman and Eric Glatt’s request to amend their suit. “Plaintiffs will seek to broaden the scope of the case to include all interns who participated in Fox Entertainment Group’s (‘FEG’s”) internship program,” wrote their lawyer Rachel Bien in an August 2 memo to the judge. The duo also want to separate the class of interns for their suit into “Corporate Interns,” those who worked through the FEG program, and “Production Interns,” those who worked on films that Fox Searchlight co-produced. To that end the amended suit will add two new plaintiffs, Eden Antalik and Kanene Gratts. The former worked through the FEG program and the latter worked on 2009’s (500) Days of Summer, a Searchlight co-produced film. The legal documents also state that “Ms. Gratts would seek to bring classwide claims under California’s Unfair Competition law for unpaid minimum wages on behalf of Production Interns who worked in California.