It feels like every story published about R. Kelly is as crazy as the last and this one is no different. The disgraced singer, who is currently awaiting a number of trials for his alleged sex crimes against underage girls, is sitting behind a jail wall with no money in his bank account and a strong chance that he’ll end his life in prison. Kelly was the subject of an award-winning Lifetime docu-series called Surviving R. Kelly and it seems as though another company was planning on using his likeness for a new program. In fact, they were reportedly planning on secretly funnelling over $1 million to the man for it.
As reported by The Daily Beast, Dylan Howard, a top executive at the National Enquirer, who also works as senior vice president at their parent company American Media Inc., negotiated with Kelly’s representative for months on setting up a payment system where the singer would be compensated for an upcoming television program. An audio recording reportedly revealed the plans to pay Kelly through sketchy means. “No network is going to buy or pay Mr. Kelly. They simply won’t do that,” said Howard on record. “They are not going to take the public relations hit associated with doing business with him. Obviously, we would be embedded with you so it’s not as if it really is independent, but it has to be sold to the market as independent.”
Howard went on to detail exactly what the agreement would look like, stating: “I license music from you. I license locations from you such as homes, et cetera. And that is how you get profit participation in such a production, because no network is even going to allow a production company’s books to show, on their books, that there is a money trail going to you.”
Kelly’s representative seemed to be on board with the plan, ensuring that the singer could use the money to pay his legal fees, also sounding confident that Kelly will make it out of this predicament a free man.