Two Deadliest Catch fishing captains are claiming that the Discovery Channel’s lawsuit against them isn’t just unfair, it’s an attempt to extort them and force them out of business.
Captains Andy and John Hillstand are being sued for $3 million by Discovery Communications for allegedly refusing to complete work on a Deadliest Catch spinoff show called Hillstranded (Initial shooting was completed, but voiceover and other post-production work remains undone, according to Discovery), but they see the lawsuit as something else entirely. Jeff Cohen, attorney for the Hillstrands, released a statement that described the lawsuit as “an astonishing and shameful instance of arrogance and greed run amok,” going on to say
While CEO David Zaslav reaps a $33.9 million bonanza in a single day in January 2010, his company attempts to bankrupt hardworking fishermen. Three million dollars is exponentially greater than any compensation ever paid to the ‘Deadliest Catch’ captains, and yet this is the figure Discovery is trying to extort from these men… Isn’t there enough unemployment in America without forcing hard-working sea captains to declare bankruptcy, sell their boats and fire their crews?
Well, as long as he’s addressing the merits of the lawsuit itself… (Elsewhere, Cohen also makes reference to the the death of fellow Catch captain Phil Harris, somewhat gratuitously). This may get ugly… well, uglier.