TLC has gone after Jon Gosselin for breach of contract.
Complaint, filed Friday morning in Montgomery County, Md., Circuit Court, accuses the former star of “Jon and Kate Plus 8” of breaching both a morals clause and an exclusivity clause in his contract with the network.
According to TLC, Gosselin capitalized on his “rising notoriety by selling his services to other media, in violation of his contractual exclusivity obligation.” That included an agreement to appear as a regular on syndie entertainment mags “Entertainment Tonight” and “The Insider.”
Discovery Communications-owned cabler said Gosselin also “routinely sold photographic rights to various media outlets” and accepted endorsement deals such as a paid August appearance at a party in Las Vegas.
Suit alleged that Gosselin breached his contract by violating a promise “not to issue any press releases nor make any other statements” without TLC’s approval.
TLC said it had given the OK for some of Gosselin’s TV and magazine interviews, but not all.
The final straw came on Sept. 24, when Gosselin did not show up to film “Jon and Kate Plus 8” despite a request from the network. Cabler said that led to the Sept. 29 announcement that the show would relaunch in November as “Kate Plus 8.”
“TLC made this announcement after an unsuccessful attempt to discuss the matter with defendant Gosselin,” the suit said.
Channel stated Gosselin then asked to be released from the exclusive provisions of his contract and said he would start publicly objecting to the show, and begin complaining of its detrimental effect on his kids, if his demands were not met.
Gosselin and his attorney, the channel alleged, have since then “continued to breach the agreement by making unauthorized public and press statements about the program and parties, including disclosing confidential information and making false and disparaging statements about TLC and Mrs. Gosselin.”
TLC hasn’t been shooting the show since Gosselin barred the cameras from filming his kids; it’s unclear whether and when the shoots may resume — and how long the shutdown may delay the launch of “Kate Plus 8.”
In response, Gosselin lawyer Mark Heller called the claim “weak, feeble and baseless.”
“Jon will vigorously defend against this baseless action,” Heller said in a statement. “When TLC and Discovery ended the program ‘Jon and Kate Plus 8,’ they also effectively terminated the purported contract and, accordingly, any rights or obligations they perceived existed concerning Jon’s conduct or actions, rights or privileges from that point forward were also terminated.”