Jerry Heller Sues Dr. Dre, Cube and ‘Compton’ Producers for Defamation

31 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, ‘Compton’ Producers Sued by Ex-N.W.A Manager for Defamation.

Former N.W.A manager Jerry Heller filed a $110-million dollar libel lawsuit on Friday against Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, NBC Universal and a slew of others involved in the making of the rap group’s recent biopic, “Straight Outta Compton.” The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court, alleges that the film, in which Heller is portrayed by actor Paul Giamatti, is “littered” with factual inaccuracies and includes a host of defamatory statements that make Heller into the “bad guy” of the film. The lawsuit accuses the filmmakers of depicting Heller as a “sleazy manager” who takes advantage of the members of N.W.A, fraudulently induces them to sign unfavorable contracts and swindles them out of money that is rightfully theirs.

As a music manager, Heller hooked up with Eazy-E early in the rap pioneer’s career and helped shepherd N.W.A to superstardom before Eazy-E’s death in 1995, his lawyer Michael R. The $110 million lawsuit, first obtained by TMZ, also names Eazy-E’s estate, NBCUniversal, Legendary Pictures, Comptown Records and the biopic’s screenwriters as defendants. Heller is suing for $35 million in monetary damages, $75 million in exemplary damages and restitution of profits from the summer blockbuster, which hauled $199.6 million worldwide.

It’s so patently dishonest and inaccurate, he couldn’t let it go on,” Shapiro told The News. “He and Eazy-E were like father and son, and depicting him as being fired by Eazy-E, indicting his loyalty and devotion and service, is anything but on the up and up,” Shapiro said. He also claims producers used his book without permission for pivotal scenes, including the one where Suge Knight strong-armed Eazy-E into signing away his rights to Death Row.

He said the film even includes incidents that are “100 not true,” such as the fact that Eazy-E, who died in 1995, fired Heller because of “financial shenanigans.” Other “lies” Heller cites in the lawsuit include that he withheld a $75,000 check from Ice Cube and fraudulently convinced Dr. TMZ adds that Heller long planned on pursuing action against the film as he spent the film’s opening night at a screening where he sat in the front row with his legal team. 2015 may not bring everything that Back to the Future II promised it would: flying cars, self-lacing shoes, we don’t see ’em happening over the next 12 months. (Then again, don’t bet against Nike.) But this year will definitely pack plenty of punch when it comes to cultural happenings. Mad Max will roar back out of the apocalypse while Mad Men rides off into the sunset, rock’s Antichrist Superstar and hip-hop’s Yeezus will rise again. After going a uncommonly long time without killing off a major character, The Walking Dead this week said a wrenching goodbye to someone who’d been part of the show’s solid core since the beginning.

At the end of the series’ very first episode, Rick Grimes was penned-in by zombies in downtown Atlanta with little hope of escape — then he heard the voice of a friendly stranger over the radio, calling him a “dumbass.” That stranger, a former pizza-delivery guy named Glenn Rhee, saved our hero’s life. Now, in this week’s episode — entitled, appropriately enough, “Thank You” — Glenn calls his buddy “dumbass” one last time, via a radio message he delivers from a walker-infested small-town shopping plaza. His hand-written note of gratitude ultimately ends up on the ground, trampled by the undead as its author dies screaming — not too long after Glenn mentions that he has a wife, too. As our heroes try to salvage the plan and get back to safety, Rick tells Glenn and Michonne that there are too many walkers ahead of them for their party to survive intact; he stresses that they shouldn’t hesitate to leave the weak and wounded behind.

It’s an impressive, horrifying spectacle, captured by director Michael Slovis in a series of overhead shots that make the walkers look like an unstoppable force of nature. He puts his faith in Nicholas, the ASZ coward he’s been trying to teach to be stronger; and the other man’s indecision leads them into a blocked-off alley, where they quickly run out of ammunition. Nicholas panics and shoots himself in the head (after saying, “Thank you”) and they both fall into the horde, where Glenn’s ripped apart, fully conscious. The death comes with about 15 minutes remaining in “Thank You,” leaving the rest of the episode to compare the lesson — that it’s cruel to be kind — with what our surviving heroes are going through.

And Rick, having shocked the Alexandrians with how callously he kills and scavenges, shocks himself when he guns down some humans who are trying to commandeer his RV, then goes through their pockets and finds jars of baby food. Right about now, this show’s fans fans are probably going through a similar intellectual wrestling match, trying to decide whether this latest twist is one too many. Most TV dramas, even the bloodiest, promise to keep at least a few major characters front-and-center, so that viewers will have someone reliable and likable to follow through the worst of times. But like Game of Thrones, our weekly dose of zombie-apocalypse drama has always been a show where the stakes are high and meaningful, and where anyone can die at any time.

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