A.V. Club

Newswire: This Harry Shearer Spinal Tap lawsuit goes to $125 million

Harry Shearer, increasingly the sonorous voice of protest in various contract disputes, is suing the entertainment groups Vivendi and StudioCanal for $125 million, over profits he says he was cheated out of for This Is Spinal Tap. Shearer played Derek Smalls, bassist and self-described “lukewarm water,” in the 1984 metal mockumentary, which was based on characters he, Christopher Guest, and Michael McKean had originated in 1978. But after several decades of Spinal Tap enjoying a successful run across film, home video, albums, concert tours, and way overused quotes, Shearer says he’s earned a mere $81 in merchandising income, from a contract that may as well read “Shit sandwich.”

In a video posted to his just-launched website Fairness Rocks, Shearer explains that, while “filing a claim like this one is neither fun nor easy … I think it’s important to challenge the status quo, not just for myself but I …

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