Black Keys' Dan Auerbach Is Being Sued Over Howlin' Wolf Documentary
Tue, 23 Aug 2016 09:31:17
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Smokestack Lightning Inc. filed a lawsuit against Auerbach on August 17th in Los Angeles County Superior Court, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Smokestack Lightning alleges that Auerbach violated "a verbal agreement" along with "the covenant of good faith and fair dealing." The rocker is also accused of engaging in "unfair business practices and negligent misrepresentation." The suit asks for $100,000 in compensation. Producers claim he agreed to direct the film, made expensive alterations, and walked away without reimbursing producers.
THR reports that Auerbach was originally involved with Smokestack Lightning: The Legendary Howlin' Wolf, discussing Wolf's influence and legacy alongside Buddy Guy, Bill Wyman and Jimmy Page. Following Auerbach's interview, Smokestack Lightning apparently invited him to take on a more prominent role, as director and executive producer.
The claim states that Auerbach agreed to come on board at the price of 9 percent of profits and total control over the movie when it was already in post-production. According to the lawsuit, "[Auerbach] quickly demanded certain material alterations and vast expansions to the then-existing picture," such as "the adoption and use of an entirely new camera and filming format." Supposedly he also pushed to add more interviews to the movie, bring on a new writer and license copyrighted Howlin' Wolf photos.
Producers claimed that whenever they expressed discomfort with rising costs, Auerbach's team threatened to back out of the project. Smokestack claim they went along with his requests, but Auerbach ultimately left the project, reportedly refusing to reimburse producers for his changes.
Smokestack Lightning Inc. alleges that Auerbach eventually walked away from the project, leaving the company to cover the costly changes he had demanded.
—The ARTISTdirect Staff
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