English dub voice actor, Vic Mignogna, has an update with his lawsuit from Funimation.
Earlier this year, famed voice actor Vic Mignogna, known for portraying the Legendary Super Saiyan Broly for the English dub of the Dragon Ball franchise, filed a lawsuit against Funimation and several other individuals for defamation against him for the preceding allegations of sexual harassment.
In June 2019, Funimation, the entertainment company responsible for dubbing and distributing international content, filed a motion to dismiss the defamation lawsuit that Mignogna filed against them in April. Funimation has filed a counter suit to deflect as the trial proceeds.
As reported by CBR, Funimation has filed a supporting brief in life with their motion to dismiss in Texas known as the Texas Citizens Participation Act (TCPA). It is a Texan state law designed to combat (SLAPP) lawsuits. SLAPP, which stands for Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation. These are lawsuits that are used to silence cities of an individual or organization by forcing them to defend their actions in court.
SLAPP is a clever tactic the defendant, and likewise the plaintiff, will use to keep a witness and other party, mainly critics, tied up with their own legalities with their respective lawyers, and with court fees. SLAPP lawsuits, while not a definitive win in court, are useful tactic to intimidate others from stepping forward.
What Funimation, the defendant in this case and other parties involved of whom accused Mignogna of sexual harassment, are debating that Mignogna’s defemation charge cannot stand because he is a public figure. The only way such a charge can stand is if the defendant has been proven to have acted with actual malice by knowing the falsity of their claims or had an actual disregard for the truth. However, since the harassment claims were public knowledge before Funimation made any comments against the actor, it would be difficult to prove this in court.
Another complicated issue Funimation has debated is the actual allegations against Mignogna from voice actors Monica Rial, Ronald Toye and Jamie Marchi (just to name a few). This also includes several other individuals with claims that are so many that he has essentially become “libel-proof.” This means that there can simply be nothing a critic can comment or act on to defame that person any further. Although, that individual’s bad reputation would have to be well known to the public.
The anime feature film Dragon Ball Super: Broly is available on DVD and Blu-ray. Dragon Ball Super currently airs English dub on Adult Swim via Toonami Saturdays at 11 pm ET and is also available via Funimation and Amazon Video.