Che “Soaked In Bleach” di Benjamin Statler potesse essere un film/documento ciofeca lo avevamo subito sospettato. Un’opera (l’ennesima) realizzata (forse) per cavalcare (ancora) l’onda dell’emozione chiamata Kurt Cobain. A conferma arriva l’azione legale intrapresa da Courtney Love. Ecco il testo integrale della lettera inviata ai cinema dal team di avvocati che segue la vedova Cobain.
Our firm represents Courtney Love Cobain. It has come to our attention that —— plans to exhibit and promote the motion picture “Soaked in Bleach” (the “Film”) on June 11, 2015. This letter shall serve as notice to that the Film portrays Ms. Cobain in a false light and contains defamatory statements that exposes to substantial liability. We demand that you immediately cease and desist from infringing on Ms. Cobain’s rights in any manner whatsoever, including but not limited to completely halting the Film’s planned exhibition and promotion.
The Film falsely presents a widely and repeatedly debunked conspiracy theory that accuses Ms. Cobain of orchestrating the death of her husband Kurt Cobain. A false accusation of criminal behavior is defamatory per seunder California Civil Code Section 45a, which entitles Ms. Cobain to both actual and presumed damages.
There is simply no credible evidence to support any of these defamatory claims, as has been publically known for years. In 1994 the Seattle Police Department (“SPD”) investigated the tragic event of Mr. Cobain’s death and concluded the case a suicide. In the 20 years following Mr. Cobain’s death, no one has presented any colorable case of involvement of our client. Finally, SPD re-examined Mr. Cobain’s death in 2014 and, again, concluded it was a suicide. (See SPD Case Investigation Report)
Any accusation that our client was responsible in any way for Mr. Cobain’s death thus cannot have any credibility. Any alleged factual representation to the contrary would be knowingly false, and hence intentionally and maliciously defamatory. Such a finding would then expose to punitive damages as well. Even though —- did not produce the Film, distributors of defamatory material can be held liable if they “knew or had reason to know that the material was defamatory. (Grace v. eBay Inc. (2004) 16 Cal.Rptr.3d 192, 198-199.) This letter puts Crest on such notice.
In addition to defamation per se, the false accusations contained in the Film provide Ms. Cobain with valid claims for negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress, false light, and tortious interference with business, among others. For years Ms. Cobain has been publically subjected to threats based on the same kinds of baseless theories that appear in the Film, and dissemination of the Film would only exacerbate the risk that she will suffer further emotional and financial harm. Furthermore, it has been widely reported in the press that Ms. Cobain has business opportunities underway that accurately chronicle the image and likeness of both herself and Mr. Cobain. With this letter, you are now on notice that, as appears to date, the Film will interfere and disrupt such opportunities.
We hereby demand again that you immediately cease any and all plans for exhibition or promotion of the Film. If we do not hear from you within five days, we are required to immediately pursue all available civil legal remedies on behalf of our client against you, as well as any and all other entities or individuals associated with the production, promotion, distribution, or exhibition of the Film. This letter does not constitute a complete or exhaustive statement of all the facts or of Ms. Cobain’s rights or claims. Nothing contained herein shall be construed to waive, limit, modify, or abridge any right, claim or demand available to our client, at law or in equity, all of which are hereby expressly reserved.
Very truly yours, Marc Gans of DONGELL LAWRENCE FINNEY LLP