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Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

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  • Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

    Stephen Slesinger Inc. is making a grave mistake by suing Disney for the
    breaching of the 1983 contract. Although there may have been some mis-
    representations in Disney's report, 15 billion dollars in damages and
    2 billion in compensatory damages is outrageous.

    If the company decides to sue in hopes of relieving Disney of any and all
    rights to the Winnie the Pooh franchise they will be out more money than
    they could imagine. First, they will not get near what they are asking for
    in damages, not to mention the insane costs of trying a company of Disney's
    caliber in the CA state courts. Further, if they do win the case and regain
    full-right ownership, they will never be able to market the name with successful
    results. They do not have the media outlets avail. that Disney does to carry
    out the successful marketing of the product.

    I do oppose big business at times that I feel they are taking advantage of their
    resources in order to oust a small, yet imposing company. However, this is a case
    where Stephen Slesinger Inc., specifically Pati Slesinger, is just a sore loser.

    I hate to repeat, but the fact that Stephen Slesinger Inc. feels they have been
    shorted 15 billion dollars, and have suffered from head aches diagnosed at 2 billion
    dollars blows me away.

    SS Inc, grow up.

    That is all I have to say. There is a lot more to this story for those interested; visit:|US;DIS&
    Ah, how strange! The molecules are so active now!

  • #2
    Re: Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

    Been resolved already.


    • #3
      Re: Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

      Any chance you can post the actual article, the link leads to a login.
      "Happiness is a Low Water Level"


      "Creating magical memories and making Managers cry since 1955!"


      • #4
        Re: Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

        You can google Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit and find the articles.
        My new motto for 2008 - "If you will live like no one else today, later you can live like no one else." - Dave Ramsey.


        • #5
          Re: Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

          Judge pooh-poohs lawsuit over Disney licensing fees

          By Michael McCarthy, USA TODAY
          Walt Disney (DIS) won a major victory Monday when a California state judge threw out a 13-year-old lawsuit over rights to Winnie the Pooh that could have cost the company as much as $1 billion.

          Disney and CEO Michael Eisner have been under attack from critics over management of the firm. But the decision to duke it out in court over U.S. merchandising rights to the Pooh character appeared vindicated when California Superior Court Judge Charles McCoy dismissed the lawsuit with prejudice.

          That means Stephen Slesinger Inc., which holds the rights, is barred from suing again on the same claim. Although McCoy's ruling is likely to be difficult to overturn, lawyers at SSI plan to appeal.

          New York literary agent Stephen Slesinger acquired the merchandising rights from Pooh's British creator, A.A. Milne, in 1930. The family firm SSI later licensed those rights to Disney, which pays the company about $11 million a year. The family sued Disney in 1991, claiming it reneged on an agreement to pay royalties from Pooh tapes, DVDs and computer software and shortchanged it on other parts of the deal. Disney countered that the items are not covered by the 1983 licensing contract.

          In a 28-page ruling, McCoy wrote that SSI altered documents and used private investigators to pilfer confidential Disney documents from Dumpsters. SSI's Pati Slesinger also lied in court, he wrote. "SSI's misconduct is so egregious that no remedy short of terminating sanctions can effectively remove the threat and adequately protect both the institution of justice and (Disney) ... from further SSI abuse," he wrote.

          "The Winnie the Pooh case is finally over, and over for good," said Disney lawyer Daniel Petrocelli, who will also represent former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling in his upcoming trial. "Every one of (SSI's) claims has been dismissed with prejudice."

          But Bret Fausett, whose firm became the eighth team for the Slesingers when it took over the lawsuit in December, said McCoy didn't rule on the merits of the case and promised an appeal. "It will take longer, but we feel we will have our day in court." As for the garbage picking cited by McCoy, Fausett said the documents came from "publicly accessible" Dumpsters.

          Winnie the Pooh is Disney's No. 1 cash cow, bigger even than Mickey Mouse, generating $1 billion for the company and $6 billion at retail. Disney has said that losing the case would have cost hundreds of millions of dollars, at a minimum.

          Disney shares rose 10 cents to close at $25.20 on the New York Stock Exchange.

          Contributing: Wire reports

          Thank you btw for whomever mentioned to Google it.
          "Happiness is a Low Water Level"


          "Creating magical memories and making Managers cry since 1955!"


          • #6
            Re: Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

            Thanks Techskip...however, the last statement about stock prices is completely inaccurate. Stock prices over the last year rise and fall in the low $30.00's
            Ah, how strange! The molecules are so active now!


            • #7
              Re: Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

              I actually looked into this further, and the article TechSkip has inserted is not current.
              I posted my reaction to the CURRENT situation with Disney and Stephen Slesinger Inc., which can be found on the e*trade financial website, or by contacting your stock/bond agent.

              The easy way to tell that the article posed from USA Today is old, is by looking at the stock value on the bottom. Anyone with Disney stock, or that follows the companies financial standings will note that prices have not been that low since 2004. Which shows that this article must date back to some time in March of 04. The first thing you learn in any university Research Methods class is to fact check your resources, ESPECIALLY if they are coming off a website and/or the Associated Press.

              I will update as I gather information. But for the time being, be advised that the above article from USA Today is 3 years old, and does not pertain to the current legal situation between the two parties.
              Ah, how strange! The molecules are so active now!


              • #8
                Re: Winnie the Pooh Lawsuit

                Appeals Court Denies Request to Reinstate Pooh Lawsuit

                LOS ANGELES, September 26: A federal appeals court in California has denied a petition by Stephen Slesinger Inc. to reinstate its long-running case against The Walt Disney Company over royalties from Winnie the Pooh.

                In 2004, a Los Angeles court dismissed the suit brought by Slesinger’s estate on the grounds that its legal team trespassed on Disney property, finding documents related to the case in the company’s trash receptacles. The suit was originally filed in 1991 by the widow and daughter of Stephen Slesinger, the agent who secured the Pooh rights through a licensing agreement with author A.A. Milne in 1931. Under a 1983 agreement, Slesinger licensed Disney the U.S. and Canadian rights for radio and television, merchandising and recording, among others. The Slesingers contend that Disney owes them billions in unpaid royalties from the sale of Pooh videos, DVDs, software and other products not specifically covered under deals with Disney but allegedly promised to Slesinger by Disney representatives.

                Meanwhile, Stephen Slesinger Inc. intends to ask the California Supreme Court to review the Court of Appeal's decision.

                In addition, Slesinger has said that it is moving forward with plans to seek termination of Disney’s U.S. and Canadian television and merchandising rights—which it says could cost The Walt Disney Company upwards of $15 billion. Slesinger is also asking for compensatory and general damages in excess of $2 billion.

                Pati Slesinger, the owner of Stephen Slesinger Inc., commented: “Disney continues to breach our contract, and continues to infringe our copyrights and trademarks. Every single day that Disney refuses to pay us what they are contractually obligated to pay, there are new breaches, which will only increase the many millions of dollars in damages they owe. Disney knows this is not over and they know the reasons why."

                She continued: "We will go as far as we have to go to and seek whatever legal remedy we can to receive justice in this case. We will vigorously pursue our legal rights in the federal court case, and in the proceedings before the California Supreme Court, and believe that in the fullness of time the company will obtain just compensation from Disney for cheating our company out of royalties it owed and withheld."

                In addition to the state case, Slesinger is pursuing claims against Disney in federal court. Pending claims against Disney in Slesinger's federal compliant include: infringement of rights under the United States Copyright Act; trademark infringement; trade dress infringement; breach of contract; breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing; fraud; declaratory relief; injunctive relief; violation of California's Business and Professional Code; and unfair competition.

                That is the current state of affairs...
                Ah, how strange! The molecules are so active now!


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