Julianna Margulies heads to real-life trial in management dispute

UPI/Phil McCarten
UPI/Phil McCarten | License Photo

Julianna Margulies plays a high-powered defense attorney on CBS' hit drama, "The Good Wife," but she's about to get some real-world courtroom experience in a legal dispute with her former management firm.

The battle started when her former manager Steve Dontanville, of Dontanville’s D/F Management, claimed that the 47-year-old actress still owed him $420,000 in commissions for his work negotiating a L'Oreal contract and her role on "The Good Wife." But since the hit drama went into syndication, Dontanville wants millions more.


This week, a Los Angeles judge denied Margulies' request to settle the dispute in summary judgement, and the case will go to trial January 8.

The commissions battle has grown increasingly heated, with Margulies countersuing for her former manager's "general lack of initiative, attention, focus and commitment” during their time together. Dontanville's attorney then threatened to file a "civil malicious prosecution claim" against her for the countersuit.

Margulies legal team will be looking for ways to discredit the firm in its dealing with other high-profile clients, which means that other celebrities could be mentioned at trial. Dontanville also represented Willam Dafoe and Frances McDormand, among others.

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