Copeland Sues Doors for $1M

Ex-Police drummer seeking damages for breach of contract

March 10, 2003 12:00 AM ET

Former Police drummer Stewart Copeland has slapped keyboardist Ray Manzarek and guitarist Robby Krieger of Doors 21st Century (as the new incarnation of the Doors is now known) with a $1 million suit. Copeland -- who has filled the drum seat left vacant by original Doors drummer John Densmore since last summer -- claims that Doors 21st Century members Manzarek and Krieger breached an oral contract to use him for the band's upcoming tour and album.

"In or about February 2003, after exploiting the credibility, talent, and reputation to plaintiff Copeland to launch and generate heat for the tour and album and once the success of the Doors 21st Century was assured, defendants breached the oral contract," reads the suit, filed Friday. "They purported to hire a replacement drummer, keeping plaintiff's 20% of the net profits for themselves."

Copeland had played a handful of dates with band last year before his elbow injury forced the cancellation of a December show. He reportedly aggravated the injury during the band's January 19th show in Las Vegas, and drummer Ty Dennis has filled in for the band's recent performances.

The lawsuit comes on the heels of a suit filed February 4th by Densmore against Manzarek, Krieger, Copeland and Ian Astbury, the former Cult singer who is singing in place of the late Jim Morrison. Densmore filed an injunction against this incarnation of the band's use of the Doors name and logo.

Representatives for Copeland, and Manzarek and Krieger would not comment on the lawsuit.

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