Press Release

Judge Michael L. Stern Orders $28.5 Million in Pre-Judgment Interest to Don Johnson Productions in Nash Bridges Lawsuit

Judge Michael L. Stern of the Los Angeles Superior Court ruled in favor of Kirkland & Ellis LLP client, Don Johnson Productions and ordered approximately $28.5 million in pre-judgment interest to plaintiff Don Johnson Productions in addition to a jury's July 7, 2010, $23.2 million verdict. This resulted in a total judgment of more than $51 million, in addition to more than $75,000 in costs.

The award requires Rysher Entertainment LLC (Rysher) to pay Don Johnson Productions (DJP) an additional $28.5 million in pre-judgment interest.  Don Johnson continues to be entitled to half of the future profits of the Nash Bridges series.  The Nash Bridges series is currently playing in more than 45 countries around the world and is expected to bring more than $50 million in the coming years. 

"I am grateful to Judge Stern for today's ruling. The jury recognized that I am the co-owner of the series. Nash Bridges was my project and I poured my heart into it. From the beginning, I have asked only that Rysher honor our contract. I feel a sense of vindication and sincere gratitude that both the jury and Judge Stern continue to agree with me," said Mr. Johnson.

"We appreciate both the jury's verdict and Judge Stern's ruling today," said Kirkland & Ellis LLP partner Mark Holscher, who represented Mr. Johnson both at trial and in the post-trial proceedings.

During its six-year run, the 122-episode Nash Bridges series became a top-rated live-action program on Friday nights from 1996-2001, generating more than $325 million in revenue, including more than $150 million from worldwide syndication.  As the owner of the idea and the series star, Don Johnson, through Don Johnson Productions, negotiated and obtained a 50 percent interest in the series'copyright.

Mr. Holscher has represented numerous Fortune 500 companies in complex civil litigation. A former Assistant U.S. Attorney, Mr. Holscher was recently named one of the Top 100 lawyers in California. Kirkland partners Jeffrey Sinek and Diana Torres were also key members of the team.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP is a 1,500-attorney law firm representing global clients in complex litigation and dispute resolution/arbitration, corporate, intellectual property and technology, restructuring, real estate and tax. The Firm has offices in Los Angeles, Chicago, Hong Kong, London, Munich, New York, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Shanghai and Washington, D.C.