Hot Coffee, Is Justice Being Served?
In the HBO documentary Hot Coffee, Stella Liebeck’s personal legal battle over a spilled cup of coffee serves as a springboard into understanding our civil justice system. While most people think they know the “McDonald’s coffee case,” they don’t know that corporations spent millions distorting the case to protect business assets while limiting access to the courts. Since Stella’s fateful day, big business, with the aid of the political and media lapdogs that depend on it, brewed a dangerous concoction of manipulation, distortions and outright lies to protect corporate interests. Americans are convinced that we have out of control juries, too many frivolous lawsuits and a judicial system that needs reforming. By following four people, whose lives were devastated by the attacks on our courts, the film challenges the assumptions Americans hold about “jackpot justice.”
Susan Saladoff, the Director, Producer and Writer of Hot Coffee, and a former trial lawyer, will share her journey of making the film, how the film was received, and what has happened since the film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2011.