In a shocking ruling, the court has decided to uphold the verdict handed down in a suit between Disney and U.K.-based Celador–an entertainment company–in which Disney lost $319 million on the grounds that they improperly deducted several different fees and expenses related to “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”.
Celador also claimed that ABC failed to include their own profits when calculating the funds owed to Celador. The issue seems to stem from a contract between the two entities that was not clear-cut enough. In this case, the jury was able to interpret the legalese however they wanted, and in the end they sided with Celador.
“What the court of appeal did today validates what a careful and thoughtful trial judge and a quite attentive jury did two years ago,” Celador’s lead litigator Roman Silberfeld said. “We’re pleased for the client.”
Disney, however, is understandably upset after being hopeful for an appeal and released a statement about the verdict.
“We are extremely disappointed with the decision, as ABC and Buena Vista Television continue to believe that they fully adhered to the Millionaire agreement,” a Disney rep said.