This may be one of my favorite Vegas stories not involving Mike Tyson or strippers. The Hollywood Reporter has reported a crazy lawsuit currently involving Deadmau5, his agency William Morris Endeavor, a Vegas high roller, and the Bon Jovi classic ‘Livin’ On A Prayer’.
In February of 2011, Deadmau5 was scheduled to perform a set at XS Nightclub when he was approached by his agent, Joel Zimmerman (which also happens to be Deadmau5′s real name), with an offer. XS co-owner Jesse Waits had approached him with an offer from club regular Don Johnson, who is the CEO of Heritage Development and commonly spends between 100k and 500k at the club. Johnson would pay Deadmau5 $200k if the DJ would include Bon Jovi’s ‘Livin’ On A Prayer’ in his set.
Obviously, Deadmau5 played the track, even though it’s a very un-Deadmau5 thing to do, but, hey 200k is 200k. During the song, Johnson jumped on the stage to dance like an idiot and hug the DJ, while the screens in the club displayed “Don Motherfucking Johnson” in text. After the show, Zimmerman was accompanied by Waits to the casino to collect the payment, and was promptly yelled at and confronted by Johnson’s personal security team. The two never received payment.
Zimmerman, feeling XS was at fault, said that Waits would have to pay the $200k in order to preserve the relationship between the club and the agency. Waits offered to pay $50k, and Zimmerman and WME paid Deadmau5 the other $150k to keep their client happy.
The story would have ended there, and never made it to the public, had Waits not filed a lawsuit against Zimmerman, claiming that the $50k was a loan that was never paid back. Zimmerman and WME both filed counterclaims to Waits and Johnson, explaining the night at XS in detail.
It appears that the parties have reached an out of court settlement, although it hasn’t been finalized. For now, you can watch the video of the $200k song below.