TVBizwire

CBS Is Sued, Accused of Stealing the Idea for 'The Talk' Deadline

CBS has responded to a lawsuit filed last week that accuses the network, along with production companies and some top executives behind “The Talk,” of stealing the idea for the daytime talk show, Deadline.com reports.


Author Angela Wilder filed the suit Oct. 17, alleging that it was her idea for a talk show focused on motherhood that inspired the CBS show. The show, produced by CBS Television Studios and RelativityREAL, is co-hosted by Sara Gilbert, Sharon Osbourne, Sheryl Underwood, Aisha Tyler and Julie Chen.

CBS responded Monday, saying: “It’s one thing to get sued over a project that was pitched to us, but quite a stretch to be sued over a pitch that was made to somebody else. Ms. Wilder’s alleged offering to Sony played absolutely no part in the creation of ‘The Talk.’ We’ll vigorously defend this case and expect to prevail.”

The report notes: “CBS has always said that ‘The Talk,’ which debuted in October 2010, is based on an idea by Gilbert.”

Wilder, the author of “Powerful Mate Syndrome,” never met with CBS or Relativity -- listed among the defendants in the suit -- but she says she presented the TV show idea to Holly Jacobs, Sony’s senior VP of Reality and Syndication Programming, in December 2008.

“The suit states that at the end of their one hour together, Jacobs turned down Wilder’s ‘The Mothers’ Hood’ pitch. Wilder says she left two copies of her WGA and U.S. Copyright Office-registered treatment with Jacobs,” the story reports.

The suit states: “Jacobs and Sony had a close working relationship with RelativityREAL, LLC, and its Chief Executive Officer, Tom Forman, such that Forman, his company, and CBS all had direct and easy access to Wilder’s Treatment during the development stage of ‘The Talk.’”

The suit also notes that Forman, one of the defendants, “was very well-connected with CBS,” which “fully funded” his company, Tom Forman Productions. Forman later joined RelativityREAL.