After being in the spotlight for the past few years, Dr. Luke is reportedly no longer the CEO of Kemosabe Records at Sony Music, according to The Hollywood Reporter. On Tuesday, THR reported that the music company is "distancing itself" from Luke (real name: Lukasz Gottwald), by reportedly removing him as CEO of the label in court documents and allegedly removing his page from the Sony Music's website. Bustle reached out to Gottwald's rep, as well as Sony Music, for comment, but did not receive an immediate response. However, details surrounding the situation are unclear, as Variety is reporting that while Luke and Sony's relationship is "winding down," that doesn't mean they're done just yet. A source claimed to Variety, “Sony still has a relationship with Dr. Luke,” and that production deals are still in place.
As a refresher, Luke has been involved in legal battles since 2014. At the time, singer Kesha sued Luke for alleged sexual, emotional, and verbal abuse. Dr. Luke adamantly denied the claims and filed a defamation lawsuit in response. Kesha's lawsuit was later dropped in 2016. However, there was still an ongoing battle over Kesha's music career after a judge denied her injunction to no longer work with Luke. In January 2017, both parties reportedly attempted to amend previous claims. At the time, Kesha's lawyer told BuzzFeed News,
"Kesha is focused on getting back to work and has delivered 28 new songs to the record label. We have conveyed to Sony Music and the label Kesha’s strong desire to release the single and an album as soon as possible."
However, a judge denied this request from Kesha in March.
Bustle reached out to Kesha's lawyer, following this new report about Luke and Sony, but did not receive a response at the time of publication.
This isn't the first time there was reports about Luke's relationship with Sony. In March 2016, there were rumors that Sony was dropping Luke. At the time, Dr. Luke's attorney denied the claim in a statement to Entertainment Weekly:
"This is not true. Luke has an excellent relationship with Sony. His representatives are in regular contact with executives at the highest levels at Sony and this has never come up."
Meanwhile, regarding Kesha's ability to record music, an attorney for Sony told the New York Times in February 2016,
"Sony has made it possible for Kesha to record without any connection, involvement or interaction with Luke whatsoever, but Sony is not in a position to terminate the contractual relationship between Luke and Kesha. Sony is doing everything it can to support the artist in these circumstances, but is legally unable to terminate the contract to which it is not a party."
It's unclear where exactly Dr. Luke and Sony's relationship stands at the moment. But hopefully the details will become more concrete in the near future.