A film investor has sued former Weinstein Co. executive David Glasser, now CEO of “Yellowstone” producer 101 Studios, alleging that he failed to repay a personal loan despite repeated assurances.
Glasser is best known as producer of the hit Paramount Network drama series “Yellowstone,” starring Kevin Costner, as well as its spinoffs. In 2009, he was head of international sales with the Weinstein Co., when, according to the lawsuit, he persuaded Radenko Milakovic to loan him $531,288.
Milakovic was an investor in the Weinstein Co. film “Escape From Planet Earth” and also put money into a project called “90 Days.” According to public records, he is an officer with Altima Partners LLP, in the U.K., and is a resident of Portugal.
According to his complaint, Milakovic initially rebuffed Glasser’s request for a loan, fearing that it would complicate his relationship with the studio. But, the suit claims, Glasser insisted that he needed the funds to prevent the foreclosure of his parents’ house.
Milakovic began to fear that if he refused the loan, Glasser could jeopardize his relationship with the company, according to the suit.
“Plaintiff and his team had observed that Defendant Glasser would often create conflict and chaos only to then step in to ‘fix’ it, when it suited him to do so,” the lawsuit states. “The relationship with TWC had become increasingly difficult, so Plaintiff felt he needed to protect that business investment. Based on Defendant Glasser’s prior behavior, and his position and authority at TWC, Plaintiff became increasingly concerned that Defendant Glasser could and potentially would make things even more difficult.”
Milakovic said in the suit that he felt he had “no choice” but to make the loan. According to the complaint, the loan was supposed to be repaid in six months, but that did not happen. Instead, Milakovic alleges that Glasser made only sporadic payments, and has paid nothing since 2016. The current balance, according to the complaint, is $908,563.
Glasser’s lawyer, Jeffrey Gersh, said the lawsuit has “no merit whatsoever.”
“This is a 13-year-old debt,” Gersh said. “They have made up allegations to try to force David to pay money that he doesn’t owe, at a time in his life when he’s on top of the world right now. They come out of the woodwork to bring these claims that have no merit.”
Glasser was chief operating officer of the Weinstein Co. in 2017, when the company collapsed in the wake of Harvey Weinstein’s sexual assault scandal. Glasser was briefly in line to take over the company under a new ownership group, but that deal fell apart, Glasser was fired, and the Weinstein Co. was liquidated in bankruptcy.
Glasser launched 101 Studios with backing from Ron Burkle in 2019.
The suit alleges that Glasser met with Milakovic for dinner in Miami in November 2018 and tried to persuade him to invest in the new company. Milakovic refused unless the outstanding loan was first paid off, he alleges. According to the suit, Glasser orally agreed to pay $161,288 in cash and to transfer a 2.32% interest in 101 Studios, in order to satisfy the obligations. However, Glasser never followed through, the suit alleges.
Later, Milakovic asserts that Glasser was able to refinance his personal debts with a loan of at least $5 million from an accredited financial institution. However, Milakovic alleges that he never received repayment. The complaint states that Glasser “chose instead to live a lavish lifestyle, which included vacation homes, global travel and luxury cars.”