LOS ANGELES – Sean Connery is suing a country club for allegedly using his "worldwide celebrity" to fatten its reputation and refusing to pay money owed him after he ended his membership.
Connery is seeking more than $500,000 for breach of contract and more than $500,000 for "unjust enrichment" from the Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, according to a lawsuit filed Monday in Superior Court.
The suit claims the golf club was aware of the actor's lucrative status as an "internationally renowned celebrity and famously avid golfer" when it invited him to join in 1990 at a special initiation fee of $35,000.
His celebrity boosted the club's value and attracted new members, the suit states.
In 2004, Connery terminated his membership. But according to the lawsuit, Connery's contract allowed him to collect 80 percent of the "going rate" of membership — more than $500,000 — which the club has refused to pay.
"The lawsuit was not our first choice," Connery's attorney Louis "Skip" Miller said Tuesday. "But they won't honor their obligations, so we had no choice but to file."
Club membership manager Karen Jacobs declined to comment on the lawsuit Tuesday.
Connery, 75, who won an Oscar in 1988 for "The Untouchables" and was knighted in 2000 by Queen Elizabeth II, has been recovering from surgery for a kidney tumor.