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IMF

IMF

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Published by eriq_gardner6833
court papers
court papers

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Published by: eriq_gardner6833 on Jan 16, 2013
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03/14/2013

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DEFENDANT’S MEMORANDUM OF CONTENTIONS OF FACT AND LAW
DAVID MANNING CHODOS, ESQ. (State Bar No.:39555)CHODOS & ASSOCIATES1880 Century Park East, Suite 1450Los Angeles, California 90067-1615Telephone:(310) 203-3888Fax:(310) 203-3866Attorneys for DefendantINTERNATIONAL MEDIA FILMS, INC.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURTCENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
PARAMOUNT PICTURESCORPORATION, a Delawarecorporation; and MELANGEPICTURES LLC, a Delawarecorporation,Plaintiffs,vs.INTERNATIONAL MEDIA FILMS,INC., a Nevada corporation,Defendants.))))))))))))))))))
Case No. CV 11-09112 SJO (AJWx)DEFENDANT’S MEMORANDUM OFCONTENTIONS OF FACT ANDLAW
Honorable Justice James OteroDept. 12Pretrial ConferenceFebruary 4, 2013, :9:00 a.m.Courtroom 1Trial Date: February 12, 2013
Case 2:11-cv-09112-SJO-AJW Document 46 Filed 01/15/13 Page 1 of 18 Page ID #:610
 
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DEFENDANT’S MEMORANDUM OF CONTENTIONS OF FACT AND LAW
I.INTRODUCTIONA. Timing Issues and Problems Peculiar to this Action
This action revolves around competing claims based upon competing chains of title going back over 50 years. The witnesses and participants in the key transactionsor purported transactions central to this action are long dead. Many of Defendantsdocuments are in Italian. The crucial documents and transactions span two continentsand over five decades.Given these hurdles, conducting the discovery and assembling the evidencenecessary to resolve the competing claims has been especially time consuming. Atthe same time, the parties have engaged, and are still engaging in relatively complexefforts to attempt, thus far without success, to forge a settlement of this matter.As a result of these problems, the parties sought an extension of time tocomplete discovery and preparation for trial. On November 1. 2012. the courtgranted the parties’ request and extended the discovery cutoffs, but did not vacate or continue the trial date. As a result, the parties are drafting exhibit and witness listswhile still learning vital facts. As this brief is written, the deposition of Plaintiff Melange had not yet occurred, and responses to Defendants’ written discovery, alsoexpected to provide information likely to have a substantial effect on the evidence,written and oral that will likely be presented to this court, has not yet been revealed.We do not contend that this is the fault of the Defendants or their counsel. It israther the product of the complexity and messiness of the available evidence and thelack of percipient witnesses to the central transactions at issue.What these circumstances portend, however, that facts not yet revealed asrelevant or vital may require the revision and updating of the respective parties’contentions and the oral and written evidence upon which they will ultimately rely...
B. The Basic Controversy Inciting this Action.
Both the Plaintiffs and the Defendant claim ownership to the right to exploit the
Case 2:11-cv-09112-SJO-AJW Document 46 Filed 01/15/13 Page 2 of 18 Page ID #:611
 
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DEFENDANT’S MEMORANDUM OF CONTENTIONS OF FACT AND LAW
movie La Dolce Vita based upon differing chains of title starting from the sametransaction ( the “Riama - Cinemat transfer, discussed in more detail
infra)
occurringover half a century ago. The parties agree on and indeed depend upon the validityand authenticity of that transaction. As we note, it is the competing versions of whathappened afterwards that is crucial to the resolution of this controversy. While thePlaintiffs’ Complaint rather stridently attempts to portray the defendant IMF as a brazen usurper, IMF’s claim to ownership it based upon a well documented series of transactions, which unlike Plaintiffs’ are thoroughly authenticated, in many cases bynotaries, who, in Italy, have the function of magistrates.
II.A SYNOPSIS OF THE LAWSUIT:
Plaintiffs Paramount Pictures Corporation ("Paramount") and MelangePictures, LLC ("Melange") brought the instant action against Defendant InternationalMedia Films, Inc. ("IMF") for declaratory relief and copyright infringement, claimingthat they have the exclusive rights to the exploitation of the Frederic Fellini motion picture
 La Dolce Vita
("Picture" or “LDV”) in the United States and Canada and thatIMF is infringing upon Plaintiffs’ right.IMF contends that, to the contrary, IMF held the exclusive right to distributethe Picture in United States and Canada until IMF sold those rights to InternationalClassic Films (“ICF”) in 2008, before the Plaintiff’s lawsuit was filed. (For reasonsthe Plaintiffs have not enunciated, Plaintiffs declined to name ICF as a defendantwhen, early in this litigation, they were notified of that transfer.)
III.WHAT PLAINTIFFS HAVE TO PROVE:
In order to sustain this action against IMF, Plaintiffs have the burden of proof on two issues(1)That they own the exclusive rights to distribute the Picture in theUnited States and Canada, and therefore have standing to bring this action; and
Case 2:11-cv-09112-SJO-AJW Document 46 Filed 01/15/13 Page 3 of 18 Page ID #:612

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