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Barkin and Perelman continue their quarrel

By Emily Morgan

December 7, 2007 at 3:40pm

The battles between Revlon billionaire Ronald Perelman and ex-wife Ellen Barkin didn’t stop with divorce court.

Despite a divorce settlement in the tens of millions (estimates range from $20 million to $60 million), Barkin sued Perelman in August for $3.4 million. Last week, Perelman sued her right back.

Barkin’s suit had accused Perelman of withholding money he promised to invest in her film company, Applehead Pictures. Perelman, in turn, accused Barkin of diverting his original investment into a competing venture, Applehead Pictures II.

Barkin, known for her work in Ocean’s Thirteen and The Big Easy, founded Applehead Pictures in 2005 with her brother, George Barkin. During the marriage, Perelman invested $465,000 in the venture.

Perelman’s complaint, referring to the original company as Applehead I, charged: “Far from operating Applehead I as a good-faith venture of three members to produce motion pictures, the Barkin Defendants have misappropriated Applehead I’s assets, diverted business opportunities away from Applehead I and have otherwise breached their fiduciary duties to Applehead I.”

Perelman maintains that Barkin used his money to fund a lawsuit that she filed against him, as well as to pay her own company, Barkin Industries, approximately $7,000. Perelman also said his investment has been used to inappropriately fund George Barkin’s “excessive compensation package” from Applehead Pictures of $250,000 per year.

Barkin and Perelman divorced in 2006 after being married for five years. It was the fourth marriage for Perelman, and the second for Barkin, who told Parade Magazine last May: “I’m not proud of that marriage.”

Barkin was previously married to actor Gabriel Byrne.

Perelman recently was named the twenty-eighth richest American by Forbes, which estimated his net worth at $10 billion.

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