The Work

October 12, 2010 6:17 PM

Eminem's Publisher to Apple: Show Us the (Settlement) Money

Posted by Victor Li

Eminem's well-publicized comeback has extended to the legal arena. The artists's publisher, Eight Mile Style, and its lawyers have filed a motion asking a judge to enforce a 2009 settlement with Apple Computer, Inc. and Aftermath Records stemming from a dispute over royalties of sales on iTunes, according to this report in the Detroit News.

The motion, filed under seal in federal district court in Detroit, is seeking $2.2 million, including attorneys fees, to be paid to Eight Mile, the Detroit News says. The matter dates back to 2007 when Eight Mile filed suit against Apple for allegedly selling downloads of songs by Marshall Mathers, a.k.a. Eminem, without properly compensating him. A second defendant--Aftermath Records, founded by Eminem mentor Dr. Dre and owned by Universal Music Group--also was sued for its role in negotiating the iTunes deal on behalf of Eminem, allegedly without the authorization to do so.

After a short, five-day trial in October 2009, the parties agreed to settle. The terms of the agreement--including the settlement amount (the Detroit News sources the $2.2 million figure to court records) and which party is obligated to pay Eight Mile--were not made public.

Eight Mile's attorneys, Richard Bush of Nashville-based King & Ballow, and Howard Hertz of Hertz Schram in Michigan, did not return phone calls seeking comment.  The defendants were represented by Glenn Pomerantz of Munger, Tolles & Olson and Daniel Quick of Dickinson Wright. Pomerantz and Quick also did not respond to messages left.

The enforcement motion comes a month after Eminem scored a huge victory in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in his ongoing battle over royalties with various recording companies, including UMG and Interscope Records. In that case, Eminem had argued that he was entitled to a 50 percent royalty rate for digital downloads while the record companies wanted to pay the standard 12–20 percent rate for CD sales.

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