Robert De Niro’s company, Canal Productions, has filed a $6 million lawsuit against a former employee, accusing her of both embezzling money and binge-watching Netflix while on the clock.
The actor’s loan-out company also accuses Chase Robinson of racking up exorbitant hotel and restaurant charges and using millions of De Niro’s frequent flyer miles for her personal trips.
According to the suit, filed on Saturday in state court in New York, Robinson was hired as an assistant to De Niro back in 2008. She ended up later being promoted to “vice president of production and finance,” and her 2019 salary was a healthy $300,000.
She ended up leaving the company in April amid growing concerns about alleged “corporate sabotage,” the suit states.
Throughout the lawsuit, De Niro’s company says that Robinson rarely came into the office, alleging she spent “astronomical amounts of time” watching Netflix during work hours. In particular, the company alleges that during a four-day period in January, she watched 55 episodes of “Friends.” In addition, on one of those days, she ordered lunch from Caviar San Francisco and had dinner at Paola’s Restaurant, charging both meals to the company card.
Over another four-day period in March, she allegedly watched 20 episodes of Arrested Development and 10 episodes of Schitt’s Creek.
“Watching shows on Netflix was not in any way part of or related to the duties and responsibilities of Robinson’s employment and, on information and belief, was done for her personal entertainment, amusement and pleasure at times when she was being paid to work,” the suit states.
The suit alleges that Robinson made $12,696.65 in unauthorized charges at Paola’s over a two-year period, in addition to $8,923.20 at Dean and Deluca and Whole Foods, and $32,000 in charges for Ubers and taxis.
Robinson allegedly brushed off concerns in her resignation email in April, saying the accusations about her spending and other issues as “ridiculous.” She later drafted a recommendation letter for herself, which De Niro refused to sign.