When you hear the word 'Chippendales' it should bring to mind scantily clad, sexy men without shirts in bow ties.
You wouldn't immediately think of murder, arson, an FBI investigation and suicide....but that's all part of the Chippendales history.
Back in the late 1970s, Somen "Steve" Banerjee, an Indian immigrant living in L.A., went to a bar in Redondo Beach and saw they had men stripping for women and the women loved it. So he stole the idea and created his own nightclub, but wanted to elevate the idea to attract a more 'fancy' clientele. He called his club Chippendales, featuring hot, topless men wearing bow ties and cuffs.
It soon became the hottest club in town.
Eventually, Steve brought on Nick De Noia, an Emmy-winning children's television producer to take Chippendales to the next level. But the relationship was like oil and water, the two argued over everything especially when it came to money or control of the show.
Shortly after, Nick wanted to open a club in New York, and he had another goal...to take Chippendales on the road. So he sat down with Steve and worked out a deal that they wrote out on a napkin. That deal gave Nick the right to launch a New York club and keep half the revenue... AND to take Chippendales on the road and 'own it in perpetuity.'
But Steve didn't consider what 'in perpetuity' meant.
Over the next few years, Nick opened that club in New York and took the show on the road...and made millions. He was fawned over in the media, credited with Chippendales success, and that really pissed off Steve... and he decided to do something about it.
Listen to Gary & Shannon tell the rest of the story.