Frank Darabont Sues AMC Over ‘The Walking Dead’
With the current season of The Walking Dead on hiatus, it seems like the undead aren’t the only things to watch out for.
Frank Darabont, the original show runner for AMC’s monster hit series, has filed a lawsuit against the cable channel for denying him “tens of millions of dollars of profits,” reports Entertainment Weekly.
The cable network which produces the series, allegedly charged its own cable network an “artificially low” license fee to carry the show, according to a lawsuit filed by Frank Darabont on Tuesday. “The within action arises out of the unabated effort of a television conglomerate to deprive Frank Darabont — the artist who created, wrote, directed, and produced the television series ‘The Walking Dead’ — of his contractual entitlement to profits from the series,” read the lawsuit Darabont filed with his talent agency CAA.
The celebrated zombie series has had its own fair share of behind-the-scenes drama such as Darabont unchallenged firing from AMC.
“The sole goal of this sham transaction is to enhance the profits of the parent company by minimizing the revenues that go into the ‘pool’ of funds for the show’s profit participants,” the complaint said. Darabont’s issue points to the difference between the fee AMC charges its own company for each Walking Dead episode compared to the license fee paid to a third party for the AMC series Mad Men as evidence of the company’s “improper and abusive practice of ‘self-dealing.'”
AMC has not yet made a comment about the lawsuit, but Mad Man earns the company $3 million per episode in fees, while The Walking Dead fee is just $1.45 million per episode. Funny thing is the 1960s-themed drama only draws in about 25% of the audience that The Walking Dead gets.
We shall keep you posted as more develops on this matter. The Walking Dead returns to finish its fourth season in February 2014.
Props: Entertainment Weekly