Jon Lovitz sues comedy club business partner, alleges he stole more than $100,000

By | April 3, 2013 at 2:34 pm | 3 comments | News, TV/Movies | Tags: ,

Comedian Jon Lovitz was bilked of more than $100,000 from his business partner, according to a lawsuit filed yesterday in Los Angeles Superior Court. At the center of the suit is Frank Kelley, with whom Lovitz opened the Jon Lovitz Comedy Club on Universal CityWalk in Universal City in 2009.

After the former Saturday Night Live castmember invested $1.5 million in the club, Kelley was expected to manage day-to-day operations. However, Lovitz now alleges the club, despite its seemingly successful run as part of the Los Angeles-area comedy scene, has fallen on rough financial times, due to mismanagement. Kelley has used the venue’s credit card and checks in excess of $100,000 for personal use, Lovitz alleges.

“Kelly has repeatedly and shamefully abused [Lovitz's] trust by secretly misappropriating significant funds which [Lovitz] entrusted to him for the operation of the Jon Lovitz Comedy Club,” reads the complaint.

The venue also operates as the Jon Lovitz Podcast Theatre, where popular comedy podcasts record live versions of their shows in front of an audience. Lovitz is scheduled to perform stand-up in Alexandria, VA tomorrow night with fellow SNL alums Chris Kattan and Tim Meadows. The Hollywood Reporter, who first obtained the suit, has reached out to Kelley for comment, but has not heard back.

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Dylan P. Gadino

Dylan is the founder and editor in chief of Laughspin. He launched Punchline Magazine in 2005 (which became Laughspin in the summer of 2011) with childhood friend Bill Bergmann. Dylan lives in northern New Jersey with his wife and two sons. He hopes the Shire is real.

  • http://twitter.com/zoomos  Scott

    Listen to Hollywood Babble-On 126 to get more info on this story, it’s Kevin Smiths and Ralph Garmens podcast. it’s the first 30+ minutes.

  • Buster Brown

    Well, if $100k made the difference over 4 years, Lovitz… Take the clue. Whew, good thing Jon’s pals haven’t been able to do away with lawsuits by imposing “Tort reform,” yet, eh?

    • 3vi1

      The lawsuit doesn’t say that. The money is “in excess” of $100k, but it doesn’t look like Lovitz knows the total extent yet – just what he’s paid out of pocket back into the club. What he does know is that he wouldn’t have put up the original $1.5M if this guy hadn’t lied about his CV. I’m not a Lovitz fan (or hater). If what the lawsuit says is true – he was royally screwed… but then again he *really* should have had someone check out the guys background, and had a real accountant on the payroll. You can read the real details here: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/sites/default/files/custom/Documents/ESQ/JON%20LOVITZ%20COMPLAINT.pdf