Former Walt Disney Co. president and Hollywood agent Michael Ovitz won a legal victory over billionaire investor Ron Burkle in a Los Angeles courtroom Thursday, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Soussan Bruguera granted motions for summary judgment, preventing Burkle's claims against Ovitz stemming from two failed Internet ventures from going forward.
The lawsuit, filed in February 2005, claimed that Ovitz reneged on an agreement to share the financial risks of two Internet companies: CheckOut.com and TalkCity.com. Burkle said in the suit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, that Ovitz should have shouldered half of the $33 million that Burkle had invested in the two ventures.
Bruguera said Thursday that there was no evidence the partnership was a formal one.
"There was no business," she said. "They may have said they were partners on TV; I believe that was in a colloquial way."
Ovitz was a powerful Hollywood executive when he left Creative Artists Agency to become president of Walt Disney Co. in 1995. He was fired a year later, with a hefty severance package. He launched a talent management firm -- Artists Management Group -- that later was sold. Ovitz now keeps a comparatively low profile as a private investor.
Read the full L.A. Times story .(registration required)
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.