Johnny Depp’s Lawsuit Could Soon Disrupt Hollywood Dealmakers

Case takes on relationship between Hollywood stars and attorneys who represent them.

Johnny Depp
Johnny Depp attends the 'Black Mass' Virgin Atlantic Gala screening during the BFI London Film Festival, at Odeon Leicester Square on October 11, 2015 in London, England. (John Phillips/Getty Images for BFI)

Johnny Depp plans to bring a case in front of a Los Angeles judge on Wednesday that could ultimately wreck havoc in Hollywood.

The actor recently settled his big lawsuit against his former management firm, but he’s still taking the lawyer who negotiated most of his work for almost 20 years to court. Depp alleges that he and Jake Bloom have been together since 1999 strictly on a handshake agreement basis, according to  The Hollywood Reporter.

Depp argues that, since they do not have a written contract, he is entitled to recover more than $30 million in fees.

If there is a ruling in the Pirates of the Caribbean actor’s favor, the precedent could affect decades of similar handshake agreements across the industry.

There is a provision in California business and professions code that requires an attorney to get a written contract when a client is being represented on a contingency basis.

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