The Sopranos has been off HBO for almost six years now, but that does not mean the profits from the series have been totally figured out just yet.
Brad Grey, the chairman and chief executive officer of Paramount, has had a confidential arbitration claimed filed against him from Universal, saying that he failed to honor a 50-50 profit-sharing arrangement on the show. Grey, who worked at the Brillstein-Grey management/production company before his gig at Paramount, executive produced the series and earned a lot of money doing so.
In 1996, Universal bought half of Brillstein-Grey, while they divested in 1999. However, the two sides apparently reached an additional agreement about the rights to several TV projects that were being developed at the time. The Sopranos was one of these.
Grey is believed to have made at least $50 million from HBO during the show's run, which could potentially mean $25 million should be going Universal's way.
The claim was filed in December 2012. While facts need to be sorted and the truth is probably in the middle somewhere, did Grey never think Universal was going to want its cut? Especially when the show is question is the biggest hit in HBO history.
HBO is not involved in the suit in any way.