(CN) – The Golden Globe Awards can air on NBC, even without the approval of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, a federal judge ruled.
Claiming that the Golden Globe’s producers had signed a deal with NBC behind its back, the Hollywood Foreign Press Associations filed suit against Dick Clark Productions and Red Zone Capital Partners II in November 2010. The Hollywood Foreign Press said its 1993 agreement with Dick Clark Productions required permission before granting any contract extensions or renewals with NBC. Dick Clark Productions allegedly had no right to enter into an agreement with NBC or any other broadcaster to telecast the Golden Globes after 2011.
U.S. District Judge Howard Matz disagreed, saying the 1993 amended agreement grants Dick Clark Productions options for renewals, extensions or modifications of its contract with NBC in perpetuity.
“The plain language of the 1993 amendment supports DCP’s interpretation,” the 89-page ruling states. “HFPA accepted this language and is bound by it. Absent is any language requiring HFPA’s consent. The extensions clause gives DCP the right to produce and distribute the Golden Globe Awards show so long as the show remains on NBC as the result of any extensions, renewals, substitutions or modifications of the NBC agreement.”
One factor that contributed to the lawsuit was the producer’s deal to broadcast the Golden Globes on NBC-owned Telemundo, Matz said. Dick Clark Productions had not consulted with the Hollywood Foreign Press on that matter, and the members were also annoyed that they had not been informed that Mosaic Media Group bought Dick Clark Productions in 2002.
The success of the awards show in 2002 may have prompted the association to break from Dick Clark Productions, according to the decision.
“The evidence reflects that, at the time of the 1993 amendment, HFPA’s main goal was to obtain and maintain a broadcast network deal,” Matz wrote. “Thereafter, the show ‘took off’ and by 2002 HFPA had begun to think beyond its previous objective. HFPA realized that it might achieve greater benefits, including a better profit split with DCP or even a more lucrative deal with another network.”