On the same day Empire’s fourth season debuted, star Terrence Howard came to an agreement with his former talent management to end their legal dispute over unpaid and upcoming commissions from the Fox hit.
The case is settled, sources tell Deadline. However, the specifics remain unknown and the whole thing could start up again if things go badly.
In paperwork put before L.A. Superior Court on September 27, Authentic Talent and Literary Management filed a “request for dismissal” for their more than a year old complaint against the Oscar nominee (read it here). However, having indicated back in August that a settlement was “reached in principle,” ATLM’s attorney Matthew Rosengart of Greenberg Traurig has given himself an out on the matter by making the dismissal “without prejudice” – aka, we reserve the right to re-file.
Having been cut loose by Howard in September 2014 after just over a year representing the actor, ATLM initially was seeking a court order against him and his loan-out company to enforce the payment of around $250,000 in commissions in their detail-rich August 2016 breach of contract complaint. After getting nothing from Howard after March 2016, Authentic also wanted to make sure in its filing that the agency saw more of the 10% it was to be owed over the seven-season contract the actor has with the very successful show created by Lee Daniels and Danny Strong. Empire debuted on January 7, 2015, and soon was snaring massive ratings for Fox.
Not that Howard was passing along his contractual obligated good fortune, claimed ATLM, which said it had to fight to keep the gig for the actor at one point.
“Plaintiff has made repeated efforts to obtain payment from Howard and has been quite patient with and respectful of him,” ATLM said last year against former client Howard. “Unfortunately, Plaintiff s patience and respect has been unrequited. Accordingly, Plaintiff has been forced to bring this action for substantial monetary damages and other relief.”
Earlier this year, a default was entered against Howard in the matter. Now, that all might be dealt with – for now.