(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Miami Beach-based rapper Lil’ Wayne is being taken to court by his former manager, on claims that the rapper fired her unexpectedly and refuses to pay her $500,000 in commissions, after being unhappy with the quality of a hotel room she booked for him.
Melissa Philipan, president of White Tides Entertainment, alleges the 23-year-old head of Cash Money Records has refused to pay his back commissions, and owes White Tides 15 percent of his earnings over the next two years, under a contract signed in June 2005.
“We’re probably looking at damages in excess of $1 million,” Philipian’s lawyer Richard Wolfe told the Miami Herald.
The rapper, born in New Orleans, made his recording debut at the age of 12, later performed as a member of the Hot Boys, and went solo at the age of 16. He’s had four gold records, and his latest release, Tha Carter, II, went platinum after debuting at No. 2 on Billboard’s Top 100 albums chart in December.
Lil’ Wayne heads both his own label, Young Money Entertainment, and Cash Money Records, which is distributed through Universal. He also had product endorsement deals with Reebok and Warner Brothers.
According to the suit, Lil’ Wayne’s three-year contract with White Tides only allows him to end the agreement in writing after one year of service for specified contract breaches. Wolfe explained to the paper that the quality of a hotel room does not qualify as a reason to end the contract, so the rapper is liable to pay White Tides for the next two years.
White Tides has booked at least 21 concerts for Lil Wayne, arranged product and publicity deals and organized guest performances on other artists’ videos and albums, according to the suit.
Wolfe told the Herald, “Sometimes artists make it big, and they want to forget about the people who helped them get there.” –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers