A long-running legal dispute between producer Julian Morrow and production company CJZ ended before the NSW Court of Appeal with a defeat for the founder of The Chaser and a win for CJZ, producers of Gruen, Bondi rescue AND Julia Zemiro’s home delivery.
The case, first revealed by TV tonight in 2019, centered around a fallout between former business partners, after CJZ transferred a 50% stake in a Watch joint venture company in Giant Dwarf, under the direction The Chaseris Julian Morrow.
Nick Murray of CJZ said that Giant Dwarf was deceptive and misleading about plans with ABC in March 2019 for a similar consumer show, Are You Being Served? , when Cordell Jigsaw was discussing his potential sale of a stake in the joint venture for $50. Giant Dwarf claimed CJZ violated its contract by preventing it from making another series and demanded compensation.
The case went to court after Morrow sued CJZ producer Nick Murray, accusing him of sending defamatory emails to ABC.
In 2022 the court ruled a result of misconduct, misrepresentation against Morrow with his companies having to pay $760,000 in damages to CJZ, but with a $35,000 defamation award in favor of Morrow.
But Murray subsequently launched an appeal on finding he defamed Morrow.
Morrow lost his appeal yesterday when the court reversed Morrow’s defamation win, finding Murray’s emails covered by the defense of qualified privilege, without willful misconduct. They also upheld the judgment that Morrow had engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct and had breached her manager’s duties.
Morrow’s company was ordered to pay CJZ$500,000 in damages plus attorneys’ fees, estimated to total approximately $2.5 million.
Murray told SMH the case was a “disastrous farce” that “should never have happened”.
Morrow said he was “very disappointed with this result”.
“We need to absorb the decision and figure out what’s best from here.”