On Tuesday, the Hollywood Reporter front-paged the news that four Orion senior execs had agreed to voluntarily repay $1 million in bonus incentive compensation earned during 1983-85.
Oops! Wednesday's Reporter revealed that it was "an elaborate hoax involving a fictitious press statement on corporate stationery" and admitted it had been unable to confirm the release's authenticity.
Orion honchos called the caper a "complete and total fabrication and a hoax" and said police are investigating. Asked if the company had any clues to the identity or the motives of the hoaxster, an Orion rep said, "We know nothing more than what's already been said."
It's no wonder that the studio folk are peeved. The "release" came on the eve of an Orion stockholder's meeting, scheduled for last Friday in New York. It was also awfully convincing, according to a source, who noted: "You have to wonder just who had the access and the ax to grind to pull this off. It (the "release") was written with the kind of twisted financial language and logic that you'd really see in that kind of document."