Barbie Case Dismissed

Mattel Inc. officials said the company intended to appeal a federal judge's dismissal of its copyright infringement lawsuit against an artist who produced a series of provocative photographs featuring Barbie.

The El Segundo toymaker said the photographs, including one that depicted the doll with a food mixer between her legs, were "crudely sexual and violently misogynistic" and violated the company's intellectual property rights.

Fox Buys Out Cable Partner

Fox Entertainment Group said it would exercise an option to purchase the 50 percent of Fox Sports International that it doesn't already own for $94 million in stock.

The News Corp. company is buying the stake from Liberty Media Inc. subsidiary Liberty/TINTA. Fox purchased half the company, which includes Fox Sports World Espanol and several other cable channels, in 1999.

Vet Center Going Public, Again

Returning to the public markets after less than a year, Los Angeles-based Veterinary Centers of America Inc. has filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission to raise up to $240 million in a public offering.

Veterinary Centers runs the largest network of vet clinics and laboratories in the nation. The company was traded publicly between 1991 and September 2000 when it was taken private in a $321 million buyout. The new offering is scheduled to take place in September.

Tribune Wins Round in 'X' Suit

A U.S. District Court judge in Los Angeles has rejected a request by 20th Century Fox to delay Tribune Entertainment Co.'s upcoming "Mutant X" TV series because of its alleged similarity to Fox's film "X-Men."

Fox sued Tribune, "X-Men" comic book publisher Marvel Enterprises Inc. and Fireworks Entertainment in April, claiming that the TV show violated its agreement to license the "X-Men" characters for future films.

While allowing the series to debut as planned in October, the court allowed Fox to pursue its breach of contract claim.

Calley Staying at Sony

Widely expected to step down this year, Sony Pictures Entertainment Chairman John Calley will instead remain at the head of the studio until 2003.

Revolution Studios founder and former Walt Disney Co. executive Joe Roth, who had been rumored as a likely successor to Calley, will take on an expanded role with the company, Sony officials said.

Valley Power Plant Approved

The Los Angeles City Council agreed to set aside $228 million to pay a new partnership to replace the San Fernando Valley Generating Station in Sun Valley.

Department of Water and Power Officials said the plant, which is scheduled for completion in 2004, should produce enough electricity to power 450,000 homes.

The builder, L.A. Power Joint Venture, is a partnership between Kiewit Construction Group and Industrial Co.

Fight Continues Over Pooh Dollars

The company that receives royalties for Winnie the Pooh merchandise sales said Walt Disney Co. failed to report at least $3 billion in Pooh-related sales, cheating it out of $35 million.

Stephen Slesinger Inc., which bought the rights to Pooh in 1929, first sued Disney nearly a decade ago..

At issue is whether Slesinger, which receives about 1.2 cents for each dollar of Pooh merchandise sold, should share revenues from the sale of video cassettes, DVDs and software.

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