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Judge urges Dick Clark Prods. and HFPA to settle Globes fight

February 7, 2012 |  5:27 pm


As the Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. and Dick Clark Productions wrapped up their respective arguments in the legal battle over who controls the television rights to the Golden Globes awards show, the judge in the case implored both sides to settle the case before he makes his decision.

"The framework to a settlement is not difficult to envision," said U.S. District Judge A. Howard Matz on Tuesday. The bench trial has run just over two weeks and closing arguments are scheduled for Friday. Matz said both sides have taken their best shots, and he directed the lawyers to go back to their respective clients and try to reach a peace agreement.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn. filed suit against Dick Clark Productions in 2010 after the latter entered into a new $150-million agreement to keep the Golden Globes Awards show on NBC through 2018. The HFPA has charged that Dick Clark Productions made the deal without proper authorization as  part of an overall plot by the production company to steal control of the glitzy annual awards ceremony.

Dick Clark Productions countered that a 1993 amendment to its almost 30-year-old agreement with the HFPA to produce the show gave it the right to renegotiate with NBC without the association's approval.

Matz, who praised both sides for their presentations, said he has been "puzzled" as to why the two parties haven't tried to negotiate a settlement.

"Each side has taken their best shot," he said, adding that if he rules, there is "not going to be a compromise."


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-- Joe Flint

Photo: Golden Globe Statue   Credit: NBC