Hollywood execs testify in Pellicano trial

Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:55am EDT
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By Leslie Simmons

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Obsession and deceit dominated testimony and audiotape played Tuesday in the trial of so-called private eye to the stars Anthony Pellicano and four others as prosecutors called up a well-known Hollywood producer and a former record executive as witnesses.

Mosaic Media Group partner Chuck Roven was among the first witnesses of the day in the wiretapping and racketeering case, testifying about his "cordial" relationship with director John McTiernan and their collaboration on "Rollerball."

The movie, released by MGM in 2002, was a box office blunder. Made on a $70 million budget, it grossed $25 million worldwide. But all the while, it turns out, McTiernan was paying Pellicano to tap the producer's phone.

"I was one of the producers on it, and (McTiernan) had a tremendous amount of physical and creative control," Roven said. "And, as it sometimes happens, in our case, I had a different creative concept."

McTiernan, he added, didn't even have a good handle on how to execute his own creative concepts. (McTiernan, who also directed "Die Hard," was sentenced to four months in prison for lying to the FBI.)

Prosecutor Dan Saunders then pulled up on the overhead projector a "report" compiled by Pellicano's investigative agency in summer 2000, when "Rollerball" was being filmed.

The first page consisted of several phone numbers related to Roven, including one number he said only two people had: Roven's wife and their nanny.

The report also outlined phone conversations Roven had with several associates, including Alex Gartner, who was then president of production at MGM and now is a producer for Mosaic; talent agent Dan Aloni; and Steve Papazian, president of physical production at Warner Bros., who talked with Roven about "Scooby-Doo."   Continued...

<p>Film director John McTiernan (L) leaves with attorney John Carlton following his arraignment in the Pellicano case at the Edward R. Roybal Federal Building in Los Angeles, California April 17, 2006. REUTERS/Phil McCarten</p>