Lisa Kudrow testified in a Santa Monica, Calif. courtroom yesterday as to whether or not she owed her ex-manager Scott Howard a substantial amount of money.
Howard represented Kudrow during her highest level of fame: as an actress on the smash hit comedy, Friends.
Through negotiations as the series blew up in popularity, Kudrow was able to see her earnings balloon from $13,500 an episode to nearly several million dollars by the time the series ended in 2004.
Kudrow and Howard parted ways three years later.
The enraged ex-manager is now claiming the two had an “oral agreement” that Kudrow has since reneged on. According to Howard, Kudrow had promised that he would continue to receive 5% of profits earned from their time together even after their work relationship ended.
Before being fired, Howard saw his share of earnings cut from 10% to 5% as Kudrow stated that at the time she didn’t think it was fair that Howard was earning more than the agents. Later during a conversation with Howard, Kudrow mentioned that everyone around her was letting go of their managers.
Said Kudrow, “I think I wanted him to know that having a manager was unnecessary.”
Random fact: Ellen Degeneres was offered the role of Phoebe on "Friends" and turned it down, so Lisa Kudrow got it. http://t.co/VNW1zoJNEd
— Dan Roberts (@danrobertsvoice) February 18, 2014
Necessary or not, a deal is a deal as far as Howard is concerned. He is suing the actress for $1.8 million over fees that Howard feels he was denied despite Kudrow continuing to earn royalties.
Said Howard of the alleged verbal agreement, “I always believed that a personal handshake kind of cemented that personal relationship, and that anything more formal felt awkward.”
Awkward or not, something more formal such as a signed document may have made things easier on the former manager. Especially since Kudrow is telling a different story altogether.
According to the actress’s testimony, she promised Howard nothing beyond the first round of residuals.
Over $8 million is said to be at stake in the ongoing case.
Image via Wikimedia Commons