Woody Stars in Courtroom Drama: His Own
It wasn't quite "Bullets Over Broadway" -- but it seemed close -- in a packed Manhattan Supreme Courtroom Thursday, with the case of Woody Allen vs. his former longtime friend and onetime movie producer, Jean Doumanian. As reported by Reuters, Allen, 66, is expected to take the stand Friday as the first witness in the lawsuit he launched against Doumanian, 67, and her and her companion Jacqui Safra's production company, Sweetland Films, over his movies, which in this case include "Bullets Over Broadway," "Mighty Aphrodite," and "Everybody Says I Love You." Allen, alleging faulty bookkeeping regarding his box-office percentages, claims he is owed $19.5 million (the figure includes interest). Doumanian claims that Allen owes her money. Reuters says that never once did Allen, sporting a blue blazer and beige pants, look up at either Doumanian, Judge Ira Gammerman or the jury during Thursday's proceedings. Instead, he remained slumped in his chair, looking glum. "All of the money in dispute went to two persons, Jean Doumanian and Jacqui Safra," Allen's lawyer said in court, according to Reuters, citing the fact that during the filming of "Celebrity," Sweetland purchased two Aston Martin luxury sports cars for $40,000 each. When production ended, Zweig said, one car was sold to Safra "for less than $5,000 and is sitting in his garage at the Safra Vineyards in Napa, Calif." The location of the other car was not specified. Counterpunching, Doumanian and Safra's attorney, Peter Parcher, told jurors, according to Reuters: "This is a bogus case orchestrated by Woody Allen's handlers. Woody Allen does not negotiate. He makes movies. His advisers negotiate. He followed the suggestions of his people. They thought they had a golden goose they wanted to fleece." The trial is expected to last two weeks.
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