Gilmore Girls producer sues over Netflix series
James R | On 17, Mar 2018
An executive producer of Gilmore Girls is suing Warner Bros. and The CW over residuals he claims he’s owed from the recent Netflix revival.
The four-part mini-series, called A Year in the Life, saw the return of Lauren Graham and Alexis Bledel as Lorelai and Rory Gilmore, as their mother-daughter relationship was followed through each of the four seasons in a year. It also saw the return of creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and husband Daniel Palladino to the show after the show’s seventh season. (You can ready our glowing review of the series here.)
Just over a year after its release on Netflix, though, Variety reports producer Gavin Polone is accusing the network of using creating accounting to avoid paying him residuals for the revival.
The suit, which was filed this week in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleges that the studio charged a 10% SVOD (subscription VOD) distribution for, which reduced profits by $2 million, and then tacked on other fees and expenses, also reducing profits.
“These expenses… falsely underrepresent the bottom line number that determines Plaintiffs’ profit participation payments, resulting in substantially lower profits paid to Plaintiffs,” says the suit.
“Defendants have also utilized the anti-competitive practice of ‘straight-lining’ — allocating the same portion of the licensing fee to every movie or television show in a package without regard to the true value of each television show or film, which deprives profit participants of a fair allocation of the licensing fees to which they are entitled,” the suit continues.
His claim represents the fourth dispute between Polone and Warner Bros. in the last 16 years, with Polone seeking an audit of Gilmore Girls’ profits dating back to 2012. Two years ago, Variety also reports that he sued to establish his right to paid for the Netflix reboot, after Warner Bros. said that A Year in the Life was a derivative work rather than a sequel or continuation and also suggested that its release on Netflix meant that it was not a “television series” as as defined in Polone’s contract. The publication also adds that, according to Polone, Warner Bros. settled matters with him.
Warner Bros. has not officially commented on the case.