Investors claim that Rob Schneider used film investment for personal purposes
UPDATE, Tuesday 2:20 p.m.:
Rob Schneider denies the lawsuit's allegations, and expects to emerge triumphant in the matter.
“The claims are flatly contradicted by the language of the contracts. The Gambles made an investment in the movie, with no guarantee of success," Schneider's spokesman told TheWrap in a statement. "The Schneider’s are confident that they will be vindicated in court.”
No doubt, plenty of people have probably demanded their money back over a Rob Schneider film — but this is an extreme case.
The former "Saturday Night Live" star and his brother are being sued by Napa County, Calif. residents George and Nancy Gamble, who claimed they were bilked out of $1.5 million that was supposed to be invested in a movie.
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In the suit — filed Thursday in San Francisco Superior Court — the Gambles say that Schneider and his brother John persuaded the pair to invest $1.5 million in an upcoming film "The Chosen One" — but so far, the Gambles haven't received a single dollar of their investment back, according to the suit.
"[T]he Schneiders led Plaintiffs to believe that their investment was safe and would be profitable," the suit reads. "Moreover, Defendants did not describe to Plaintiffs any risks of this investment."
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The suit also says that the Gambles were promised 15 percent interest on their investment.
"The Schneiders also promised that if Plaintiffs invested $1.5 million, Plaintiffs would receive their entire investment back — in addition to a specified return — from any proceeds received from any source in connection with the motion picture," the suit adds.
However, the suit says, "the Schneiders used Plaintiffs' investment for unrelated, improper and/or personal purposes."
The Gambles say that they reached an agreement with the Schneiders in 2010 to avoid a lawsuit, but, "Despite their continuing promises to pay back Plaintiffs their investment, the Schneiders have not complied with the written Guaranty — and Plaintiffs have yet to receive back even one dollar of their investment."
A spokeswoman for Rob Schneider has not yet responded to TheWrap's request for comment.
Alleging breach of contract, fraud and deceit, the Gambles are asking for an award of declaratory relief confirming that they are entitled to their $1.5 million, to be paid through any proceeds that the Schneiders "have received or may receive from any source in connection with the Project." They're also seeking compensatory damages, plus interest, along with punitive damages, and attorney fees and court costs.
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.
Correction: While the Gambles' lawsuit claims that the "Chosen One" was never completed — a claim noted in an earlier version of this story — the film did receive a 2010 release.
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