Things aren’t looking great for fans of BET‘s hit drama, Being Mary Jane. The series star Gabrielle Union has just filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the network yesterday citing, “negligent misrepresentation” and “breach of contract.”
Deadline obtained a copy of the lawsuit where Union claims that per her contract, BET would never produce more than 13 episodes per season so that the actress could also be free to pursue movie roles. However, the network is now trying to “cram all of the episodes (two 10-episode seasons back-to-back, without a previously agreed upon break between filming) into a single season in order to fraudulently extend the term of Ms. Union’s contract.”
Union salary is also a major issue. Under her contract, the actress is set to receive $150,000 per episode for season four and $165,000 per episode for season five. However, since BET is attempting to combine the fourth and fifth season, Union’s attorney claims that they are trying to avoid paying his client’s contractual raise. The lawsuit goes on to state, “Although BET represented and assured Ms. Union before she agreed to perform in Being Mary Jane that it would never produce more than thirteen (13) episodes per season of the series, BET now wants to shoot twenty (20) episodes of the series back-to-back and cram all of the episodes into a single season in order to fraudulently extend the term of Ms. Union’s contract, with no additional consideration, and to deprive Ms. Union of her agreed-upon compensation for the next two seasons of Being Mary Jane. It is outrageous that BET would treat one of its biggest stars in this manner after all she has done to support the network and contribute to its success.”
Since the show’s creator and showrunner, Mara Brock Akil has since left BET for a deal at Warner Bros TV, it looks like it might be awhile before we see Mary Jane on TV.