When you’re hot, you’re hot. Litigator Pierce O’Donnell goes to federal court in downtown L.A. this morning to argue for a preliminary injunction blocking release of the Steven Spielberg film “Amistad” on behalf of his client, author Barbara Chase-Riboud.
But before he does that, he’ll make a stop across the hall to argue a Racketeer Influenced & Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) motion for clients FM Entertainment and producers Diane and Alan Mehrez. Back in July, Sylvester Stallone sued FM for $20 million for allegedly advertising the film “The Good Life” as a Stallone film, although he says he only made a cameo appearance for “minimal compensation.” (The $20 million damage figure represents Stallone’s standard starring fee.)
Since then, O’Donnell had the case removed to federal court and filed a racketeering claim charging Stallone and his brother Frank with making a “series of threats against Alan and Diane Mehrez and their companies that constitute criminal conduct.” The complaint specifies a telephone conversation “eerily reminiscent of ‘The Godfather,’ ” in which Frank Stallone states, “I told them you (mess) with him (Sly Stallone) and he will destroy you.” The complaint also states that the only reason the producers agreed to do business with Frank Stallone in the first place “was his repeated representation that his brother Sly would play a significant support role in ‘The Good Life.’
“As if these two cases aren’t enough, my wife and I are also expecting that our son will be born today,” O’Donnell says.
In O’Donnell’s spare time, of course, there’s the copyright and trademark infringement case he filed on behalf of client Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios last month challenging the right of Sony Pictures Entertainment to develop a series of new James Bond films. A response to the complaint in that case is expected in January.