Court is now in session in the case of David Granoff PR v. Anna Nicole Smith and her lawyer, Howard K. Stern. Granoff, a New York publicist seeks to recover $154,794.99 in fees he says are owed to him by his former client for his assistance in providing the exposure "required to augment her fledgling modeling and 'acting' career." Quotes theirs. Meow!
The summons, which makes for some of the most eye-popping titillation this side of, well, The Anna Nicole Show, describes Smith as a "former professional stripper, Playboy Play-mate of the Year and Guess? Jeans model, notorious widower of geriatric Texas oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall II, and current 'star' of The Anna Nicole Show." It also quotes her telling Granoff, "David, come over here. Look at me. Look me in the eyes. I'm gonna take care of you big when this thing is over, and I MEAN IT!"
Granoff is also seeking $25 million from Stern (not to be confused with the radio shock jock), whom the summons describes as having "played an increasingly Svengali-type role in Defendant's ... professional and personal life."
So Stern is exercising some form of mind control over Anna Nicole?
"It's a very small mind, so he doesn't have to be terribly good," said Granoff.
Not that he's letting Anna Nicole off the hook, or anything.
"She was very innocent, very charming and very naive, but lately, she's hardened and she's just not very nice," said Granoff, adding that Anna Nicole "used to be a lot more irresistible than she is today."
No love lost there, then.
Granoff is confident the court will find in his favor. He says his lawyer, Benedict Morelli, has never lost a case.
If he's proven correct, America's most famous widow should have no trouble repaying Granoff the billings owed. A court recently ruled that Smith was entitled to $88 million from her husband's estate.