The concept behind Jerry Seinfeld’s web series, Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, is so simple that it’s perfectly summed up in its title: A bunch of funny people sip beverages with the prominent stand-up after a quick trip in an automobile to procure them. It’s hardly the kind of premise you imagine requiring much workshopping, but a new lawsuit questions its origins.
TMZ reports Seinfeld is being sued by producer Christian Charles, who claims the comedian stole the idea for the talk show. In his suit, Charles claims he pitched the concept to Seinfeld in 2002, and they even shot a pilot together. TMZ cites legal documents that purportedly show Seinfeld “and his team were totally into it, and came up with production budgets and marketing plans.” Charles, who directed a 2012 episode of Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, alleges Seinfeld didn’t want to share ownership of the show, and went off and made it without him. The plaintiff is asking for a “created by” credit as well as financial compensation.
Seinfeld’s lawyer responded to TMZ’s request for comment, telling the outlet, “[t]his lawsuit is delusional. Jerry independently created Comedians In Cars and Mr. Charles only concocted this claim after the show became a commercial success. We are confident that this shakedown lawsuit will go nowhere.”