Posted December 24, 2010 12:43:00
A New York film production company has sued its former president, claiming “gross lapses in judgment” cost the company millions of dollars in lost revenue and a producer credit on the motion picture Black Swan.
The defendant, Aaron Kaufman, called the claims baseless and stated he would countersue for libel.
Black Swan, starring Natalie Portman, was released for the holiday season and has gained early Oscar buzz after being nominated for four Golden Globe awards, including ideal drama.
Overnight LLC, led by producer Rick Schwartz, accused Mr Kaufman of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and misappropriation of corporate opportunity in a lawsuit filed in the Manhattan federal court.
“Among other things, Kaufman misrepresented his knowledge, skill and experience pretended to be knowledgeable about the financing of motion photos when he was not,” the suit said.
The suit further claims that Mr Kaufman misrepresented himself when he sought to make a deal with director Robert Rodriguez for his motion picture Machete, which came out in September, a move that interfered with Overnight’s obligations on other film projects, the suit said.
Mr Schwartz, who received a credit as executive producer on Black Swan, has helped produce movies such as Machete, Gangs of New York, The Aviator and The Others, the suit said.
Mr Kaufman called the claims in the lawsuit baseless and stated he would counter sue for libel and attributed the dispute to Mr Schwartz’s “erratic” performance.
He stated Schwartz ran a dysfunctional company and had failed to help produce any films on his own until Mr Kaufman joined the company and helped secure a part in the production of Machete and Black Swan.
“Literally every point is either baseless or shaded to the point of being a lie,” Mr Kaufman said.
“Literally there is not nearly a single factual thing in the lawsuit, and he goes after me personally, which is libellous.”
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Submited at Friday, December 24th, 2010 at 6:01 pm on General by robert
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