A&E in legal dispute over new 'Steven Seagal: Lawman' reality series
By Christopher Rocchio, 08/25/2009
A&E's new Steven Seagal: Lawman reality series has apparently become entangled in a lawsuit.
A&E Television Networks has sued Genuine Entertainment for falsely claiming that the reality show's concept was stolen from Genuine by the network after a series of meetings between the two parties, Reuters reported Monday.
The meetings in question occurred in 2007 and included a representative from the California-based Genuine reportedly proposing format ideas for a reality show involving Seagal.
However in its federal lawsuit, A&E claims Genuine's ideas were different from Steven Seagal: Lawman, which will follow the 57-year-old action film star in his work as a fully commissioned deputy with the Jefferson Parish County Sheriff's Office in New Orleans. A&E began production on the show last November.
A&E stated in the lawsuit that it began to pursue Seagal for the project only after it learned that Genuine's claim that he would only work for the production company was false, according to Reuters.
In the lawsuit, A&E claims Genuine contacted the network earlier this month and threatened to file legal claims for breach of contract unless it was monetarily compensated.
A&E is seeking a court declaration that it cannot be held liable for developing Steven Seagal: Lawman because the show is "separate and exclusive" from the format ideas Genuine previously pitched to the network, Reuters reported.
Steven Seagal: Lawman is currently slated to debut later this year.