A frail Peggy Lee recalled the highlights of her career for a jury trying to decide whether the jazz singer deserves royalties from videocassette sales of "Lady and the Tramp."
In a darkened courtroom in Los Angeles Thursday, jurors chuckled as they watched the 1955 animated classic about a high-class cocker spaniel who falls in love with a mutt. Lee wrote several songs and performed voices of four characters.Lee sued Disney Co., saying she is entitled to some profits from the videocassette issued in 1987.
A judge already decided Disney violated its 1952 contract with her by not seeking permission for use of her voice and songs when the videocassette was released. The jury is to decide whether she deserves damages.
Her lawyer is seeking $35 million. The movie has earned more than $140 million, including $90 million from videocassettes. Lee was paid $3,500 when the film was made and received unspecified royalties over the years.
The platinum-haired, 70-year-old singer came to court in a wheelchair. She suffers many ailments, including diabetes and a heart condition, but still sings. She was nominated for a Grammy this year.