“Honey-Loving Bear” Case Dismissed

The Walt Disney Co. has obtained the dismissal of a securities class action against the company. The case, filed in the C.D. of Cal., alleged that Disney had failed until May 2002 to disclose in its SEC filings the potential damages at stake in a separate legal dispute with Stephen Slesinger Inc., which holds the U.S. merchandising rights for Winnie-the-Pooh.

Reuters reports that Judge Mariana Pfaelzer was critical of the plaintiffs’ arguments, noting that events in a case can suddenly change lawyers’ views of the outcome (leading to Disney’s decision to make its May 2002 disclosure) and that “everybody is on notice that this [the Slesinger suit] could be a big case.” Nevertheless, the plaintiffs were given 30 days to amend their complaint if they want to try again.

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