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Tuning In to TV: Court turns down appeal in ‘Desperate Housewives’ case
Nicollette Sheridan was not wrongfully fired from TV’s “Desperate Housewives,” an appeals court ruled Thursday, but the actress should be allowed to pursue claims that she was retaliated against for complaining that the show’s creator struck her.
According to the Associated Press, a three-justice panel of the 2nd District Court of Appeal in Los Angeles agreed with attorneys for ABC and Touchstone Television that Miss Sheridan left the show when her contract was not renewed after the show’s fifth season, and that barred the actress from receiving a new trial of her wrongful termination lawsuit.
“Sheridan cannot pursue a cause of action for wrongful termination in violation of public policy because, contrary to what she claims, she was not fired, discharged or terminated,” the court wrote in a 10-page ruling.
Adam Levin, an attorney for ABC and Touchstone, wrote in an email that he expects the companies would win again if Miss Sheridan kept pursuing the case. Miss Sheridan’s attorney Mark Baute did not return a phone message seeking comment.
The ruling was the latest twist in Miss Sheridan’s case, which was first filed in April 2010. She later claimed she was fired after complaining that series creator Marc Cherry struck her in the head during an on-set argument.
Mr. Cherry and ABC denied the claims, and a judge threw out the battery claim against Mr. Cherry. In March, jurors deadlocked after a two-week trial on her wrongful termination allegations, with the panel siding 8-4 in favor of the actress.
“Desperate Housewives” concluded its eight-season run this year.
Miss Sheridan received $4.2 million on her last season of the series, and the studio had options to renew her contract to play the character Edie Britt through the seventh season.
The former “American Pie” star, who has a recurring role on FX’s “Wilfred,” has booked a guest-starring turn on the Tuesday comedy, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
Mr. Klein will play Brad, a local celebrity realtor whom Burt (Garret Dillahunt) and Virginia (Martha Plimpton) reveal to Jimmy (Lucas Neff) is his “almost” long-lost older brother. Mr. Klein has signed on for one episode.
He joins a season-three roster of previously announced guest stars including Tippi Hedren, Melanie Griffith, Wilmer Valderrama and Jenny Slate.
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