Tag Archives: celeb lawyers

PROOF in Brief + Celeb Legal News Roundup + Jill Stanley

Week Ending 9.8.2017

  • A French court ruled that topless photos taken of Kate, Duchess of York were an invasion of privacy. The photos were taken back in 2012 with a long lense as Kate and William were vacationing at a private estate. Interesting timing given it’s 20 years since Lady Di’s death which many still attribute to paparazzi. (Note: charges were ultimately dropped against paps in connection with her death.)
  • Usher responds to California lawsuit filed by 3 plaintiffs alleging he may have exposed them to Herpes. In his answer, Usher denied the allegations but the singer has still not released medical evidence proving he does not have the disease  Click here to read the complaint filed against him.
  • Dallas Cowboy Ezekiel Elliott just got a little luck. A federal judge granted the NFL Players Association request for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to stop his six-game suspension stemming from the NFL’s finding that there was “substantial evidence” that Elliott committed acts of domestic physical violence against his former girlfriend,Tiffany Thompson.
  • The Mel B/Stephen Belafonte lawsuit continues with more damaging allegations. This time about a sham marriage that Belafonte purportedly arranged so the couple’s former nanny (with whom both he and Mel B are alleged to have had sexual relations) would not be deported. Read More 
  • The family of Aaron Carter is very worried about him and the very real risk of suicide they feel may be present; they’ve had cops called to Aaron’s home several times recently. Read More
  • Fox News host, Charles Payne, will return to his show now that the Network has completed its investigation into sexual harassment claims. Payne was suspended earlier this summer pending the outcome of that investigation.

Sourced From http://proofwithjillstanley.com/proof-in-brief/

Brad Pitt Steps Out Looking Thinner Amid Angelina Jolie Divorce


Brad Pitt, is that you?

The 53-year-old actor, who has always appeared fit, looked almost unrecognizable as he stepped out in Los Angeles Thursday, looking thinner than usual. He wore loose blue skinny jeans, a white t-shirt and a black zip-up jacket.

His appearance comes more than six months after Angelina Jolie filed for divorce from him after two years of marriage and a 12-year relationship. A source close to the actor told E! News last week that “things have calmed settled between Brad and Angelina” adding, “They both have agreed to put the kids first.”

Both actors have since resumed their individual work and passions, while Pitt has reportedly been also focusing on his fitness.

A source told People Pitt has been working out “almost daily” and had “lost a few pounds, he’s in very good shape.” Us Weekly reported in January Pitt had “lost a bunch of weight” and is “focusing on himself again, watching what he eats and has a chef making him healthy meals.”

Sourced From – http://www.eonline.com/news/840450/brad-pitt-steps-out-looking-thinner-amid-angelina-jolie-divorce

Gawker Case Calls Attention to a Go-To Hollywood Lawyer


Sourced From – http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/30/business/media/gawker-case-calls-attention-to-a-go-to-hollywood-lawyer.html?_r=0

LOS ANGELES — In Hollywood, everyone knows the go-to lawyers.

For divorce, there’s Laura Wasser, now representing Johnny Depp in his split with Amber Heard.

For a potential criminal charge, think Blair Berk, who helped Caitlyn Jenner avoid one after a traffic accident in which one person died, or Thomas Mesereau, who got Michael Jackson acquitted.

And if it just seems to be a workaday violation of a famous person’s rights, like slapping Reese Witherspoon’s name on jewelry without her permission? That was the sort of case Charles J. Harder was known for — until now.

Mr. Harder and his boutique Hollywood firm, Harder, Mirell & Abrams, are suddenly in the limelight. Last week it was revealed that their legal victory for the former professional wrestler Hulk Hogan, in his suit against Gawker Media over publication of a sex video, was secretly underwritten by the Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel. Hulk Hogan, whose real name is Terry Gene Bollea, was awarded $140 million.

Mr. Thiel, a PayPal founder, had a longstanding dispute with Gawker, which published an article in 2007 saying he was gay.

The case, and Mr. Thiel’s place in it, have sent a shudder through many in the news media. At issue is whether Mr. Thiel’s role in the case will motivate other wealthy and powerful people to settle scores by giving money to litigants whose causes they support.

(The Gawker case is likely to continue with appeals, and a June 10 hearing into matters that are still pending.)

A smaller question, but almost as fascinating in Los Angeles legal circles, is this: How did Mr. Harder, a 46-year-old Beverly Hills lawyer who has specialized in protecting stars from having their rights infringed upon by retailers and marketers, wind up in the middle of this free speech fight?

Mr. Harder would not comment for this article. But a close look at his résumé, and conversations with people familiar with his background, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of confidentiality strictures, suggest that Mr. Harder’s emergence as a power player happened as most things do in Hollywood. That is, through a combination of grit, talent, shrewd calculation — and knowing the right people.

Mr. Harder’s growing connections with celebrities, their representatives and well-heeled entrepreneurs was clearly rooted in a legal action filed in 2009 in state and federal courts here.

In those interrelated cases, Mr. Harder represented six famous actresses — Sandra Bullock, Michelle Pfeiffer, Cameron Diaz, Mandy Moore, Kate Hudson and Diane Keaton — against a group of computer retailers and other companies accused of a somewhat mundane violation. The actresses’ images appeared in catalogs and on websites, on the screens of various devices offered for sale.

After working its way through the courts and mediation, that dispute ended in confidential settlements and dismissal. For Mr. Harder, the outcome was successful enough to set a pattern for succeeding cases that found him and his colleagues, in quick succession, filing various privacy rights claims for a growing client list that included George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Bradley Cooper, Liam Neeson, Jude Law, Halle Berry, Tyra Banks, Clint Eastwood and Ms. Witherspoon.

The claims and the outcomes — settlements, rather than trials — were often similar. In one departure, Mr. Harder in 2011 fought all the way through trial to a $15 million verdict for the producer Vittorio Cecchi Gori in a complicated dispute with a former colleague, Gianni Nunnari, over rights in films that included “300,” “The Departed” and “Shutter Island.”

At least once before, Mr. Harder has tangled with Gawker, in 2012 on behalf of Lena Dunham. He demanded that the site take down a posting of Ms. Dunham’s book proposal, which it largely did, though it continued to display fragments and commentary.

In early October 2012, Gawker refused a demand by Mr. Bollea’s longtime lawyer, David Houston, that it remove the sex video from its site. Mr. Harder — then at the firm Wolf, Rifkin, Shapiro, Schulman & Rabkin — was retained and quickly filed suit.

Whether Mr. Thiel had assured funding at that point is unclear. But Mr. Harder and his colleagues were confident enough of their footing to start their own firm the following January, taking Mr. Bollea and other clients with them.

During the Gawker trial, Mr. Harder, though lead counsel, played a relatively small role in the handling of witnesses, who were often questioned by others. But he currently represents clients in two additional suits against Gawker. One was filed this month in a Boston federal court by Shiva Ayyadurai, who claims he invented email, and another was filed in January in a Manhattan federal court by Ashley Terrill, a journalist. It is not known if Mr. Thiel has played any role in supporting those suits.

Harder, Mirell & Abrams currently has its offices in a small, fashionable building adjoining the Beverly Wilshire Hotel on Rodeo Drive. It is near the Century City quarters of much larger law firms like Ziffren Brittenham and Jackoway Tyerman, and talent representatives like the Creative Artists Agency.

It is also a short drive from the San Fernando Valley, where Mr. Harder grew up. He attended Montclair College Preparatory School, now closed, in Van Nuys, and did his undergraduate work at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

After receiving a law degree from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, Mr. Harder clerked briefly for Judge A. Andrew Hauk, who was then at the United States District Court for the Central District of California in Los Angeles.

Mr. Harder then spent about a year with the Lavely & Singer law firm. The firm and its principal partners, John H. Lavely Jr. and Martin D. Singer, are known as fierce defenders of prominent celebrities like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone.

But Mr. Harder did little trial work for the firm, either then or during a second stint at Lavely & Singer. In between, he worked for a web company, Load Media Network.

In 2001, a case he was working on received attention in The New York Times. His client, Wendy Withers, was told not to report to work at a financially troubled New York ad agency after having left her previous job.

It was a modest claim, and — unlike the Hulk Hogan case, with its huge award — it was settled. Ms. Withers collected two months’ pay.