How's this for surreal? Daytime's most popular courtroom show is on the receiving end of a messy lawsuit.
Last month, Rebel Entertainment Partners filed suit claiming they were owed profits from syndicated hit Judge Judy dating back to 2010. The suit went on to allege the series is losing money due to the $47 million annual salary Judith Sheindlin is being paid.
CBS Corporation, CBS Studios and production company Big Ticket fired back at the suit on Friday, claiming the plaintiffs misrepresented themselves in regards to the Judge Judy franchise, reports Deadline.
Reportedly, talent agent Richard Lawrence and agency Abrams Rubaloff & Lawrence represented Sandi Spreckman and Kaye Switzer, who developed Judge Judy after seeing Sheindlin on 60 Minutes back in 1993. According to CBS, the agents never represented Sheindlin and "did not adequately represent the producers".
Sheindlin released this statement about the lawsuit: “I met Mr. Lawrence for two hours some 21 years ago. Neither I nor anyone involved in the day-to-day production of my program has heard from him in 20 years. Not a card, not a gift, not a flower, not a congratulations. Yet he has somehow received over $17 million from my program. My rudimentary math translates that into $8.5 million an hour for Mr. Lawrence. Not a bad payday. Now complaining about not getting enough money, that’s real chutzpah.”
Judge Judy's current pact with CBS runs through 2020.