James Van Der Beek has filed a lawsuit to the tune of $700K against SiriusXM/Stitcher after an alleged podcast deal made with the brands was canned.
In the court documents filed on Friday and obtained by Us Weekly and The Blast, the “Dawson’s Creek” star alleged a breach of contract based on a deal he claimed has been in the works since 2021.
According to Van Der Beek, the deal was worth a minimum of $700K with the star being paid 50% of the net ad revenue.
He went on to claim that he dismissed other offers based on their contractual agreement.
“[Van Der Beek] had other offers and potential partners to choose from in order to develop this project,” the documents read.
“However, relying on the contractual agreement reached with Defendants, Plaintiff stopped negotiating with other buyers and affirmatively rejected those other offers (as well as other acting opportunities).”
The podcast was going to focus on the “Varsity Blues” actor’s career, allowing him to connect with fans of his television and film work, according to docs.
“He would serve as the podcast’s host, conduct interviews, provide commentary and behind-the-scenes insight on past work, and share the kind of unique perspective as an artist, seeker, and public figure that has become the hallmark of his social media presence.”
Not only that, but he would have also discussed being a husband and father of six. He shares daughters Olivia, 11, Annabel, 8, Emilia, 6, and Gwendolyn, 4, and sons Joshua, 10, and Jeremiah, 8 months, with wife Kimberly Van Der Beek, 40.
James further claims that, by spring 2022, the deal was “extensively negotiated, agreed upon orally and confirmed in writing in a series of phone calls and emails between Plaintiff and Defendants’ authorized representatives.”
However, SiriusXM and Stitcher allegedly emailed the “Labor Day” actor in April informing him that, while they were “ready to call terms officially closed,” someone from upper management reviewed the contract and ultimately axed the deal.
James goes on to claim that during a July Zoom call, the company officially “reneged” on the deal, citing a “new policy” in which the finance team reviews all contracts and can choose whether or not things move forward, with them deciding to “reject this deal.”
“This was contrary to what Defendants said during negotiations when they represented to Plaintiff that the deal terms were created in conjunction with the finance, creative and sales departments’ input and approval. This was just a pretextual excuse to renege on the deal,” the docs read.
The actor believes SiriusXM/Stitcher should still be responsible for paying him at least the expected minimum, in addition to “general and compensatory damages” and attorney fees.
“By engaging in the aforementioned conduct, Defendants breached their contractwith Plaintiff, resulting in the loss of the minimum guarantee as well as the value of usingDefendants to build a brand and audience for this particular podcast series, as well as serve as Plaintiff’s gateway into the digital/podcasting space. As a result, Plaintiff has been damaged in an amount to be determined at trial, but which shall exceed $700,000.”
A rep for SiriusXM did not immediately respond to Page Six’s request for comment.
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