Former NBA Union Boss Files $10 Million Lawsuit Against LeBron James, Drake and Future For Allegedly Stealing ‘Intellectual Property Rights’ To A Hockey Film
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A former NBA union boss has filed a $10 million lawsuit against LeBron James and rappers Drake and Future for allegedly stealing “intellectual property rights” to a movie about a segregated Canadian hockey league for black players only.

Billy Hunter, former head of the NBA Players Association and ex-federal prosecutor, filed the complaint in the Manhattan state Supreme Court. The lawsuit alleges that all exclusive legal rights to produce any film that depicts the Colored Hockey League that existed from 1895 to the 1930s belong to him, according to a report from The New York Post.

“I don’t think they believed the property rights would be litigated,” Hunter told The Post. “They thought I would go away. They gambled.”

The movie in question is a documentary titled “Black Ice,” based on a book about the history of the Colored Hockey League of the Maritimes, of which Hunter claims he brokered a $265,000 deal with the authors to hold the rights to turn into a film.

However, TMZ reports that the “Black Ice” authors and defendants George and Darril Fosty worked out a side deal with James and Drake.

“While the defendants LeBron James, Drake, and Maverick Carter [LeBron’s business partner] are internationally known and renowned in their respective fields of basketball and music, it does not afford them the right to steal another’s intellectual property,” says the suit filed by Hunter’s attorney, Larry Hutcher.

Aside from the author’s publishing firm, Stryker Indigo, and film production company, First Take Entertainment, other defendants named in the lawsuit include James’ entertainment companies — The Springhill Company and Uninterrupted Canada — and Dreamcrew Entertainment, which is the entertainment firm of Drake and Future.

“The Dreamcrew Defendants’ and Uninterrupted Defendants’ acts were and are intentional and carried out for the purpose of disrupting Plaintiff’s legal rights,” the lawsuit reads. “Each of the Dreamcrew Defendants and Uninterrupted Defendants acted with malice as demonstrated by the inflated price they paid for the duplicate option.”

According to the complaint, the Fostys “speciously claimed,” that the film deal would allegedly not violate Hunter’s film rights or “exclusive worldwide license” because the film category was considered a documentary.

Hutcher argued that “a documentary is still a ‘motion picture’ and an ‘audiovisual adaptation’ and any claim to the contrary is absurd and made in bad faith.”

Hunter and the authors had entered into an “option agreement” for a movie adaptation with a $10,000 payment back in 2019. A year and a half later, the authors notified Hunter producers from First Entertainment had approached them to create the documentary film.

The New York Post reports that representatives for James, Drake, the Fostys, and their firms had no immediate comment.

The Toronto Film Festival has scheduled “Black Ice” to premiere on Sept. 10.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Former NBA Union Boss Files $10 Million Lawsuit Against LeBron James, Drake and Future For Allegedly Stealing ‘Intellectual Property Rights’ To A Hockey Film