Two of the ‘Hannah Montana’ franchise creators have sued Disney Channel for more than $5 million in profits from the show. Barry O’Brien and Richard Correll say they’ve been denied their fair share of the Miley Ray Cyrus series.
O’Brien and Correll created the show with Michael Poryes in 2005. They now say they’re owed millions in pre-negotiated percentage-based bonuses based on their back-end deals and Writers Guild of America requirements for writers who receive ‘created by’ credits.
That Disney has denied repeated requests for payment and thwarted attempts to audit profits from the show. Correll claims he was wrongfully terminated from the show and ‘blackballed’ from future directing gigs by Disney.
Correll believes ‘the real reason for Defendants’ termination and blackballing was Disney’s desire to retaliate’ against him ‘for a) seeking compensation owing to Correll’ and O’Brien and ‘b) their testimony against Disney in the WGA Arbitration,’ according to the complaint. Poryes, the third ‘Hannah’ creator, sued Disney on similar grounds in October 2008.