Motley Crue today filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles against Carl Stubner, a manager who represents Crue drummer Tommy Lee, seeking more than $20 million in damages.
The suit alleges the Stubner, who serves as CEO of Sanctuary Artist Management, breached fiduciary duties by devising a "self-serving scheme" that promoted disastrous reality TV shows and took Lee away from touring with the band. The band seeks compensatory damages for lost earnings, lost profits and diminished brand value resulting from Stubner's actions.
In addition to Stubner, defendants named in the suit are Carl Stubner Productions, Inc.; Sanctuary Group, Inc.; and Sanctuary Artist Management, Inc.
The suit claims that beginning in 2005, Stubner enrolled Lee in "bad career" reality TV projects, including "Tommy Lee Goes To College" and "Rock Star: Supernova," both of which received low ratings. Stubner served as a producer on the programs, according to the suit.
Additionally, the suit says Lee had limited availability for high-grossing Motley Crue tours, resulting in the loss of millions of dollars for the band.
In a statement, Sanctuary Artist Management said, "Neither Carl Stubner nor Sanctuary Artist Management Inc. (nor any other Sanctuary company) have ever managed Motley Crue or any members of Motley Crue other than Tommy Lee. Mr. Stubner and Sanctuary continue to manage Tommy Lee and make no apology for having effectively managed, promoted and furthered Tommy's career with great success."
"Mr. Stubner and Sanctuary will vociferously defend this lawsuit which is utterly and entirely without merit or basis," the statement continued.
In a response to Sanctuary Artist Management's statement, Motley Crue attorney Skip Miller of Miller Barondess LLP said, "For Mr. Stubner to assert, as he now does in response to this lawsuit, that neither he nor his companies have ever participated in the management of Motley Crue is simply absurd."
"Mr. Stubner took part in numerous meetings and conference calls regarding the management of Motley Crue. In fact, Mr. Stubner and Sanctuary Artist Management have been paid nearly $1 million in commissions from the band for their management services. Mr. Stubner and Sanctuary are now going to have to explain their actions, and the receipt of all these commissions, to a judge and jury," he continued.
Lee or Motley Crue's other managers, Allen Kovac of Tenth Street Entertainment, and Bert Stein, are not named as defendants.