'Most Interesting Man' or 'average guy who doesn't pay bills'? Insults fly as Dos Equis actor and ex-agent sue each other

Actor Jonathan Goldsmith is known to millions as "The Most Interesting Man in the World," but the bearded pitchman for Dos Equis beer has been given a very different label by his former manager: "The Least Honorable Man in the Entertainment Business."

In papers filed recently in Los Angeles County Superior Court, Goldsmith fired back at his former advisors, calling one agent in particular "a failed C-list actor who appears in 'D' movies" and "a failed personal manager."   

The name-calling stems from a breach of contract lawsuit filed against Goldsmith by the Gold Levin Talent agency in October.

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Goldsmith hired Gold Levin in 2002 to manage his career and he agreed to pay the company a commission each year, the lawsuit says. Goldsmith paid commissions to the company from 2006 to 2009, but by November 2014 had stopped making payments to the management company.

"Apparently Goldsmith's preference for Dos Equis intoxicated him into
believing that he could ignore his promises and obligations," the lawsuit said.

The agency claims it is entitled to 10% of Goldsmith's $2 million in earnings for 2015 and 2016.

But in a counter suit filed by the actor Feb. 9, Goldsmith alleges that Gold Levin and agent Butch Klein wrongfully disclosed the terms of a 2012 contract with the beer company.

The defendants, the counter suit claims, "had no role in connection with securing or managing'' Goldsmith's deals with the beer company.

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Their "willful and malicious decision to disclose the terms of the confidential 2012 agreement has badly damaged Jonathan's business relationship with advertiser and jeopardized his future as the spokesman for Dos Equis beer," according to the actor's counter suit.

Bryan Freedman, attorney for Gold Levin, said the countersuit is baseless.

"He is not the most interesting man in the world," Freedman said of Goldsmith. "He is just an average guy who doesn’t bother to pay his bills, which isn't very interesting."

William Briggs, attorney for Goldsmith, described the lawsuits as a "small business dispute."

"It's no more than that, and we know it will be resolved," Briggs said. "This thing is not long in the tooth whatsoever."

ben.poston@latimes.com

Follow @bposton on Twitter.

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Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times

UPDATE

4:32 p.m.: This post was updated with a comment from attorney Bryan Freedman.

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