Former L.A Times and New York Times reporter Anita Busch, in an amendment this week to a civil suit, names onetime Hollywood power Michael Ovitz as one of the figures (along with private eye Anthony Pellicano) who tried to intimidate her off stories. Busch's lawyers had subpeonaed Ovitz in February to give testimony in the 2004 lawsuit, the LAT story says. Busch's new filing does not allege specific actions by Ovitz, but terms him one of dozens involved in "directing, organizing, commanding, employing and/or hiring individuals to engage in the unlawful and tortious conduct." In 2002 Busch found a fish with a rose in its mouth and a note reading "Stop" on the windshield of her car. She took it as a threat to stop reporting on possible ties between actor Steven Seagal and an alleged Mafia associate. Pellicano was later accused of involvement in the threat. Ovitz's lawyers denied any wrongdoing.
Small world: Busch resigned as editor of The Hollywood Reporter in 2001 along with one of her deputies, Beth Laski, following controversy over the taking of freebies by columnist George Christy. Laski is married to Andrew Blankstein, one of the Times reporters who wrote tonight's story.
Photo: Annie Wells/LAT