Also named in the lawsuit, filed on Friday in Los Angeles Superior Court, were Franco's financial manager, Steven Blatt, and his accounting firm, Tanner, Mainstain, Blatt, Glynn & Johnson. The suit claims that Blatt helped Levy set up the company Down Goes Frazier "for the sole purpose of facilitating this theft."
The suit was filed by Randall James, Levy's longtime partner in James Levy Management, and Kenneth Jacobson, who had been shareholder and director in the firm from 1999-2006, when it was known as James/Levy/Jacobson.
Levy and Blatt did not immediately return calls for comment.
The crux of the lawsuit is a claim that, in May 2006, Levy informed his partners that Franco no longer wished to pay 15% in commissions but instead would pay only 10%. But the suit contends that Franco "had never directed any such thing," and continued to pay the 15% commission. Levy, the suit claims, diverted the 5% difference to himself and the company Down Goes Frazier. The suit claims that when Randy James discovered the diverted money a month ago, Blatt "turned" on Levy and disclosed what had been going on.
Franco dropped Levy as his manager last year. According to the lawsuit, Levy and Franco reached a confidential settlement in December.
James and Jacobson are represented by Devin McRae and Michael Jones at Early, Sullivan, Wright Gizer & McRae.
2014 Variety Media, LLC, a subsidiary of Penske Business Media; Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC