RPJ Partner Ethan Krasnoo Recently Featured in Newsweek Article “Donald Trump’s ‘Uphill Battle’ With ‘The Apprentice’ Defamation Case”

Earlier this month, The Apprentice, a film following a young Donald Trump, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. The film includes Trump’s character engaging in criminal actions such as sexual assault, a crime for which he has not been convicted, but does not include any of his actions during or after his term as President. Since its premiere, former president Donald Trump has expressed intent to file a related defamation lawsuit. Krasnoo weighs in as to whether or not Trump has a case.

According to Krasnoo, Trump has a basis for a defamation claim if the filmmakers have “made misrepresentations of the truth.” However, a successful lawsuit would require proof of malice, and according to Krasnoo, “Some courts have made clear that publishing a fictitious work about a real person is insufficient to show that the filmmakers have acted with actual malice, and so, under such reasoning, Trump will be required to show that the filmmakers intended to convey a false or defamatory impression of him, which may be a daunting task.” As such, Trump would need to prove that he was falsely depicted with malicious intent by the filmmakers. Other claims that could come into play involve claims under state privacy and right of publicity status, which are also tied to malice.

Read more of what Krasnoo has to say regarding these potential claims here.