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October 4, 2015

'American Idol' Creator Sues Over 'The X Factor'

by Chris Harnick, posted Jul 20th 2011 2:00PM
Simon Cowell, Simon FullerFirst a booted judge and now a multi-million dollar lawsuit. The drama with 'The X Factor' has reached new heights -- before the show even premieres. Simon Fuller, creator of 'American Idol,' is suing Fox and Fremantle North America -- producer of both shows -- for a stake in 'The X Factor.'

"Today Simon Fuller filed a legal complaint against Fox Broadcasting Company and Fremantle in the State of California over their refusal to honor a 2005 contract that granted Mr. Fuller an executive producer credit and fees on the 'X Factor' television program in the US. Mr. Fuller has prudently attempted to settle this matter privately but the other parties have refused to honor the original contract leaving him no other choice but to pursue legal action," Fuller's publicist said in a statement to Deadline.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the suit states that as part of a settlement in a 2004 copyright infringement lawsuit, Fuller negotiated a large executive producer fee and credit for 'X Factor.' This suit was filed against Simon Cowell when 'X Factor' launched in the UK. The current suit alleges Fox, home to 'Idol' and 'X Factor,' and Fremantle North America are refusing to honor the deal.

"Fox and Fremantle made hundreds of millions of dollars thanks to the creative efforts of Fuller," the suit says. "Now, when it is time to finally perform on these unequivocal promises, Fox and Fremantle refuse to provide Fuller his executive producer credit for Defendants' new television show, 'The X Factor,' and refuse to pay Fuller and executive producer fee 'commesurate with his duties and stature in the entertainment industry.'"

A Fox representative declined to comment to Deadline, saying they have not seen the lawsuit yet.

As part of the agreement in 2005, which Fox helped broker, Cowell would stay with 'Idol' until 2010, get a bigger stake in the franchise and keep 'X Factor' out of the US until 2011. Fuller removed 'Pop Idol,' the British version of 'American Idol,' from the air in the UK and became entitled to a fee for the 'X Factor' and a credit if the show came to the US.

The lawsuit is just the latest controversy to stroke Fox's 'The X Factor.' After only serving as a judge for a few days, British pop star Cheryl Cole was dropped and replaced by co-host Nicole Scherzinger.

Watch a preview of the new series below.

'The X Factor' premieres Tues., Sept 21 at 8PM with part two airing Wed., Sept. 22 at 8PM on Fox.

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August 09 2011 at 2:29 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Why show the opportunity to view a video and then it"s "private" when I try to watch it?

August 09 2011 at 12:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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