Updates to our Terms of Use

We are updating our Terms of Use. Please carefully review the updated Terms before proceeding to our website.

Wednesday, May 22, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Soap Opera Star Is a Real-Life Defendant

LOS ANGELES (CN) - A choreographer claims in court that actress Holly Gagnier defamed her to fellow soap star Hunter Tylo, to scupper a movie about the choreographer's life.

Patricia McCoy sued Gagnier, aka Holly Guillod, 54, in Superior Court.

Tylo is not a part to the lawsuit.

In the 17-page complaint, McCoy claims she entered into a contract with Tylo after Tylo expressed an interest in playing her in an adaptation of McCoy's 1999 book, "The American Dream Has Put Our Souls to Sleep."

Tylo, 51, is best known for playing Dr. Taylor Hayes on "The Bold and the Beautiful."

Defendant Gagnier has been a regular on "One Life to Live" and "Days of our Lives," and also appeared on "ER," "Baywatch," and other shows, according to IMDb, an industry website.

McCoy claims that Gagnier, her former of ballet student, called Tylo in September and badmouthed her former mentor.

McCoy claims Gagnier told Tylo that "plaintiff has a history of luring celebrities into contracts and setting them up with the intention of suing them for breach of contract. Defendant Gagnier warned Ms. Tylo that she was personally in danger of being plaintiff's next victim."

McCoy claims Gagnier also told Tylo that "plaintiff's training creates a 'cult' atmosphere and many of her former students have been damaged by the abuse and control she exerted on them"; that "plaintiff is promiscuous with men as well as a lesbian", and that "plaintiff misused a nonprofit organization for her own financial gain."

Gagnier also accused McCoy of neglecting to take her 5-year-old grandson to a doctor when his ear was bleeding from an infection, and falsely claimed that McCoy had an abortion at 50, according to the complaint.

These statements "are unprivileged and slanderous on their face," McCoy says in the lawsuit. "They clearly expose plaintiff to hatred, contempt, ridicule and obloquy because they accuse plaintiff of committing crimes of moral turpitude, engaging in improper conduct with her students, and being an unchaste woman."

McCoy claims that Gagnier was motivated by "intense jealousy" and called Tylo to sabotage McCoy's relationship with the actress.

The lawsuit does not state whether Tylo has abandoned the movie project.

McCoy claims she trained Gagnier for 15 year, for free, beginning when Gagnier was 6.

She claims she acted as Gagnier's surrogate mother, inviting her to live with her when her mother left for Canada to care for the young girl's ailing grandmother.

When she learned of Gagnier's conversation with Tylo, McCoy claims, she "broke down while teaching, crying uncontrollably and could not be consoled."

"Plaintiff was in grief, engulfed by a feeling of profound loss, feeling as if a daughter had died and that plaintiff, too, wanted to die," the lawsuit states.

McCoy seeks damages for defamation, slander, intentional interference with written contract and other counts.

She is represented by Susan Rousier of Woodland Hills.

Neither the attorney nor a representative for Gagnier responded to requests for comment.

Categories / Uncategorized

Subscribe to Closing Arguments

Sign up for new weekly newsletter Closing Arguments to get the latest about ongoing trials, major litigation and hot cases and rulings in courthouses around the U.S. and the world.