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Golden Globes Fight Back Against Payola Allegations

2/7/2011 8:10 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association is firing back ... suing the PR firm that sued them last month ... claiming they broke their contract when they tried airing the HFPA's dirty laundry and accused them of accepting payola.

0207_golden_globe_foreign_press_ex

The PR company The Michael Russell Group sued the HFPA in January claiming they were lied to when the HFPA unceremoniously dumped them in 2009. But the biggest part of that lawsuit was that the MRG alleged the HFPA accepted money and gifts in exchange for Golden Globes.

Now the HFPA has filed a lawsuit of its own, saying the MRG committed fraud when they did several deals on behalf of the HFPA ... that also benefited themselves.

They also allege the MRG violated their contract by trying to to embarrass the HFPA when they "manufactured a fanciful tale of Hollywood intrigue ... with its colorful reference to 'payola.'"

The HFPA claims the MRG's allegations come "without a shred of evidence."

They are suing for breach of contract and fraud and are asking for unspecified damages.


13 COMMENTS

No Avatar

1.

george clooney    

lol...ok, now I feel informed!

1173 days ago
2.

JLS    

You'd think this was a newsletter from the ABA or California State Bar Association.


The average person visiting this website doesn't care at all matters like this.

1173 days ago
3.

DING DONG    

What a rip off. Actors are the best.

1173 days ago
4.

teebag    

No PR firm would risk making a statement like this unless they had some major DIRT. It would be suicide. The HFPA has to cover it's tracks and save face by filing suit in the hopes that MRG might be bluffing. HFPA will undoubtedly "settle" out of court. MRG will make a bundle in the process, but we won't know how much because of some "gag order". Of course the HFPA will probably have MRG blackballed by the Hollywood community....but by then MRG will have very heavy pockets and HFPA will be free to continue accepting bribes in exchange for their "globes". This is of course a hypothetical guess... :)

1173 days ago
5.

Sincerity    

4.

No PR firm would risk making a statement like this unless they had some major DIRT. It would be suicide. The HFPA has to cover it's tracks and save face by filing suit in the hopes that MRG might be bluffing. HFPA will undoubtedly "settle" out of court. MRG will make a bundle in the process, but we won't know how much because of some "gag order". Of course the HFPA will probably have MRG blackballed by the Hollywood community....but by then MRG will have very heavy pockets and HFPA will be free to continue accepting bribes in exchange for their "globes". This is of course a hypothetical guess... :)

Posted at 3:51 PM on Feb 7, 2011 by teebag

Dear Harvey:

Please stay on top of this one!!! The details should really be quite juicy!!!

1173 days ago
6.

Joao    

Says a lot about who controls the media [the tribe]. I read about the Michael group being "unceremoniously dumped" - but there was no mention of payola.

Of course there's payola which is why the audience got nervous when Ricky Gervais said it in words, "They also accepted bribes.” the dirty secret, that's not.

1173 days ago
7.

DJ JAH MADDEN    

http://soundcloud.com/djjahmadden/funk-will-survive

The FUnk Will SUrvive

1173 days ago
8.

TMZ@Froggy.biz    

Golden Globes is lame. Who cares what a bunch of snobby pretentious smart-asses think. Sue them!!

1172 days ago
9.

emerald    

LOL!! Oh yeah, they breeched their contract by airing the Golden Globes dirty laundry lol! Yeah, they sued for ooh guess what malpractice - for which of course they have to specify in the legal paperwork anyway, WHY they are suing lol!! All of which is publicly available information lol!! Breech of contract my arse lol!! Nice p.r way of refocusing the attention back on the original claimants to try and make it appear as if they are the ones in the wrong and not themselves! Not clever guys, these people have represented you for years and no doubt have enough bones to bury you with lol!!

1172 days ago
10.

Mike    

PAYOLA Illegal?? really?? wow....ha ha ha lol....too funny.
Nothing moves in this town without somebody coughing up some cash or "gifts." If Payola was sooooo illegal then why do all the studios give the stars and staff "gift" baskets??

Get real TMZ...and join the rest of us in reality.

1172 days ago
11.

go home!    

i thought this was well known in the industry, although i should probably go to deadline instead, as that is an industry site with people in the know...anyway, i heard that studios and shows, etc "allegedly" wine and dine this "Hollywood Foreign Press" to get nominations...so yeah, essentially, the nominations and winners are bought. Explains how there is such a difference with the globes and the Emmys. Emmys has a HUGE membership of industry professionals that vote on the awards, Globes are just these handful of reporters shacking up in apartments in North Hollywood. That's what I allegedly heard.

1172 days ago
12.

theitalian    

You REALLY think the Golden Globe Awards cannot be purchased? Try watching the 1982 movie "Butterfly" starring Pia Zadora then go figure how she "won" a Golden Globe award for that embarassing, amatuer, B-movie performance. I'm sure her wealthy husband who had connections in the industry had absolutely nothing to do with that one.

1172 days ago
13.

Brooke    

Honestly, this should surprise no one. Especially after the one guy quipped that no Ricky Gervais movie would ever get a nomination after he poked fun at them. Um, doesn't that sort of prove his point - that you guys base your decisions on things other than the merits of the movies themselves?

1172 days ago

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