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Aretha Concert Spoils Hogged
Highest Court S.D. New York
Year Ended 2011
Plaintiffs Talent Agent(s)
Defendants MTV Networks
Television Producer(s)
Other Franklin, Aretha
Short Description Plaintiff is the company responsible for arranging and booking Aretha Franklin's live performances, who contracted with a television production company for Aretha to perform at Radio City Music Hall for "VH_1 Divas Live: The One and Only Aretha Franklin A Benefit Concert for the VH_1 Save the Music Foundation." According to the agreement, to which Viacom was not a signatory, Plaintiff was to be paid $150,000 plus proceeds from ticket sales and 40% of revenue from sales of CDs and DVDs of the performance. After the concert aired, Defendants failed to secure a distributor, and Plaintiff sued, alleging the failure was a breach of contract and a breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing. Plaintiff also argued that Viacom's refusal to give Plaintiff master recordings of the concert was also a breach, as was Defendant's failure to pay royalties or account for sales, even if limited in number. The court found that Viacom was not a party to the original contract, and thus claims against it were dismissed, and that nothing in the contract required Defendants to provide Plaintiff with master recordings. Further, the court found that the agreement was entered in 2001, though Plaintiff claimed it wasn't finalized until 2006, and thus the breach claims regarding the failure to secure a distributor were time-barred as outside the 6-year statute of limitations. Nonpayment of royalties, however, was not dismissed, as the obligation was ongoing. Plaintiff's claims for breach of good faith and fair dealing were dismissed as duplicative of the contract claims, and promissory estoppel could not be maintained because a valid contract existed. All claims except royalty nonpayment were dismissed. - LSW

Legal Issues
Contracts Breach Good Faith & Fair Dealing
    Payment & Performance
General Equitable Actions Promissory Estoppel

Opinions BLD Productions, LLC v. Viacom, Inc.
2011 WL 1327340
S.D. New York , March 31, 2011 ( No. 10 Civ. 2625(PGG) )

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Related Searches Parties
Franklin, Aretha ( Other )
MTV Networks ( Defendant )
Talent Agent(s) ( Plaintiff )
Television Producer(s) ( Defendant )
Viacom ( Defendant )

Legal Issues
Contracts / Breach / Good Faith & Fair Dealing
Contracts / Breach / Payment & Performance
General / Equitable Actions / Promissory Estoppel

S.D. New York (highest court)

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