Walt Disney Co.'s board did not breach their fiscal responsibilities by agreeing to hire Hollywood superagent Michael Ovitz as president in 1995, then granting him a $140 million severance package when he left just 14 months later, a judge ruled Tuesday.

Chancellor William Chandler III said that while directors' conduct "fell significantly short of the best practices of ideal corporate governance," board members did not breach their duties.

Milberg Weiss Bershad & Schulman LLP, the firm representing the plaintiffs, announced it would appeal the ruling.

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