Why Is Bam Margera Suing Johnny Knoxville and the ‘Jackass Forever’ Team?
Bam Margera, one of the original stars of the Jackass franchise, has filed a lawsuit in an attempt to stop the release of the upcoming Jackass Forever film.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the skateboarder and stuntman filed Monday (Aug. 9) in Los Angeles. He is suing Paramount Pictures, MTV Networks, Johnny Knoxville, director Jeff Tremaine and producer Spike Jonze amongst others, and claims he was wrongly fired from the film in late 2020.
Aside from stopping the film's release, he is also seeking damages, court costs and restitution for the use of his intellectual property in the upcoming release.
“Margera is not only the star of the television show and film franchise that has made Paramount and MTV hundreds of millions of dollars to date, but a co-writer and producer who came up with the vast majority of the franchise’s most memorable content,” the suit reads.
The suit alleges Margera was forced to sign a "Wellness Agreement" during a rehab stint in 2019 in order to stay involved with the franchise.
“The Wellness Agreement took its toll on Margera," the suit continues. "For months, Margera was obligated to complete daily drug tests, multiple times per day, both scheduled and unscheduled, requests for which could come in at any hour of the day or night. Margera was subject to countless breathalyzer and urinalysis tests, which he submitted to and passed repeatedly for several months without objection or incident. However, in doing so, his ability to travel, work, and effectively live life were completely constricted."
Margera, who was also prescribed medication by a medical team from Paramount and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, was ultimately fired after testing positive for prescription Adderall. The suit adds that the prescription was already known about and was prescribed to treat the star's attention deficit disorder.
"Margera was the only 'Jackass' co-star terminated from the franchise for taking medication that he was prescribed, in order to treat his well-documented medical conditions," the suit reads according to NBC.
Aside from claims of fraud, the lawsuit also claims that Margera was discriminated against, and that he is protected under the Americans With Disabilities Act.
Although the suit alleges he was fired in 2020, TMZ first reported that Margera had been fired from the project back in February 2021. Sources at the time claimed that he was let go since he was unable to uphold his end of contract. The news came shortly after he posted a 10-minute video that included claims about the upcoming film.
"If anybody cares about me don't go see their movie," he said at the time.
Knoxville, Paramount Pictures, MTV and others involved in the lawsuit have yet to publicly comment on Margera's move. However, Knoxville seemingly alluded to the situation in a May profile with GQ.
“We want Bam to be happy and healthy and get the help he needs,” he said at the time. “We tried to push that along. I think that's all I really want to say about it.” When pressed on the situation, Knoxville added that he didn't want to engage in a "public back-and-forth” but instead wanted his co-worker to heal.
“I just want him to get better," Knoxville added.
Margera, meanwhile, shared a statement via his attorney. "I am pissed-off, angry, hurt, and shattered that ... the studios and producers ripped off my creativity, content, and stunts to make this movie, fired me without justification, and refuse to pay for my work; I created this franchise before any of these guys ever got involved."
Currently, Jackass Forever is scheduled to premiere Oct. 22.