×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

LMNO Productions and Discovery Communications Settle Legal Battle Over ‘Little Couple’ Accounting Practices

Discovery Communications and Eric Schotz’s LMNO Productions have settled their long-running legal battle over accounting practices on the TLC series “The Little Couple.”

LMNO filed suit in June 2016, claiming that Discovery was in breach of contract by canceling several LMNO series and taking over production of “Little Couple.” Discovery countersued and claimed LMNO had been maintaining two sets of books on its shows in order to shortchange profit participants and overcharge TLC’s parent company for expenses.

At the time, LMNO alleged that its accountant, Paul Ikegami, had been embezzling from the company for years, and that Discovery took advantage of LMNO’s weakened condition to sever its relationship with LMNO on six shows. LMNO filed a separate fraud claim against Ikegami that is set for trial in Los Angeles Superior Court on May 1.

“LMNO and Discovery have reached an amicable settlement of the claims between them in the litigation. The settlement resolves all claims and issues that were asserted in the case between LMNO and Discovery to the mutual satisfaction of both parties. The terms remain confidential, and the parties have agreed to make no further comment regarding the settlement agreement.”

Industry sources said the settlement talks had been going on for some time. The sides pursued the discovery process for the federal lawsuits and also went through private mediation.

The stars of “Little Couple,” William Klein and Jennifer Arnold, filed their own lawsuit against LMNO last June, echoing the allegations that Discovery had previously made. The stars, both of whom have dwarfism, alleged that LMNO had underreported foreign licensing revenues and deprived them of their fair share of proceeds from the show. Klein and Arnold recently filed for an injunction to block the settlement between LMNO and Discovery, but the judge rejected that request. Their litigation against LMNO is still ongoing.

The claims of large-scale accounting fraud drew the attention of federal prosecutors in Los Angeles, which launched an investigation of LMNO and its leader. The status of that probe is unclear, but LMNO is no longer believed to the target of an active investigation.

Popular on Variety

More Biz

  • Homecoming

    Peak Storytelling Here as Podcasts, Short Form Ride New Wave

    The concept of peak TV is nothing new. But scratch the surface of original content these days, and it’s no longer about television — from podcasts and short-form video, storytelling itself is at a peak. Thanks to audio, video and other new platform companies including Gimlet, Quibi, Wondery, iHeartMedia and Serial Box, listeners and viewers [...]

  • Patti Smith Cambridge Folk Festival

    Patti Smith Muses Over the Many Ways to Tell a Story

    It’s Sept. 11, and Patti Smith has been thinking a lot about people who died. This is understandable. It is, of course, the 18th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, and an annual time of mourning for New York City, the city that Smith adopted as her hometown 50-plus years [...]

  • Hopper Reserve

    Dennis Hopper's Dying Wish: His Own Strain of Marijuana

    Even as celebrity brands are starting to flood the emerging Cannabis market, Hopper Reserve stands out. The brand was launched by Marin Hopper, Dennis Hopper’s daughter from his marriage to Brooke Hayward. Hopper Reserve is a gram of California indoor-grown flower, two packs of rolling papers, a pair of matches and a trading card either [...]

  • Snoop Dogg Weed

    In the Cannabis Business, Not All Star Strains Are Created Equal

    With the cannabis green rush in full swing, many celebrities are jumping into the fray with their own brands, including such well-known stoners as Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg and Tommy Chong. But as it turns out, not all star strains are created equal, so we assembled a trio of crack experts to put the product [...]

  • Richard Branson Jason Felts

    Kaaboo Festival Acquired by Virgin Fest Owner Jason Felts

    Kaaboo, which says it has “shifted the music festival paradigm by offering a highly amenitized festival experience for adults,” is now under new ownership. Virgin Fest founder and CEO Jason Felts (pictured above with Virgin founder Richard Branson) has fully acquired all of the festival brand assets through an affiliate of Virgin Fest, the music [...]

  • Live Nation Chief Michael Rapino Talks

    Live Nation-Ticketmaster Chief Michael Rapino Talks Dept. of Justice Inquiries

    Back in August, Senators Richard Blumenthal of New Jersey and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota made the most recent of several requests for an Department of Justice antitrust investigation into competition in the ticketing industry, and it soon became clear that the target of the probe was Live Nation and its 2010 merger with Ticketmaster, which [...]

  • Lowell Smokes Cafe Marijuana

    With Cannabis Lounges, On-Site Consumption, Marijuana-Infused Meals Go Legit

    Can this century’s Roaring ’20s repeat history but with pre-rolled joints instead of whiskey flasks and soccer moms as the new flappers? This month, West Hollywood will see the opening of the nation’s first at least quasi-legal cannabis consumption lounge, officially dubbed Lowell Farms: A Cannabis Café, located at 1211 N. La Brea between Fountain [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content