Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Federal Judge Dismisses Defamation Claims Against Filmmaker Moore

Ruling that Michael Moore's statements were "factual and substantially true", U. S. District Court Judge Paul D. Borman has tossed James Nichols' lawsuit against the filmmaker without allowing the case to proceed to trial. Nichols had objected that Moore's portrayal of him in the 2002 film "Bowling for Columbine" might cause viewers to believe that he actually participated in the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995. He also claimed that Moore's film caused him emotional distress and invaded his privacy. Borman considered Nichols a public figure for purposes of the suit, since the brother of convicted bomber Terry Nichols "voluntarily injected himself into the public controversy surrounding the bombing". Read more about the ruling here and here.

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