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Time Warner Accused of Juggling Books

LOS ANGELES - Three studios say Time Warner cheated them of profits from the TV show "Smallville." Killara Productions, Leonardtown Productions and Tollin/Robbins Productions accuse Warner Bros. of abusing its vertical integration to "negotiate" with its own affiliates in "naked self-dealing agreements."

Among other things, the studios say Time Warner "negotiated" below-market license fees, "lumped the series in with several other, less successful shows to sell as a package" in foreign markets and failed to pay tax credits or music royalties.The studios seek an accounting and punitive damages for intentional interference with contract, breach of contract, and aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty. They are represented in Superior Court by Michael Kump with Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump & Aldisert


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