GSN Sues to Quash VH1 Special

Apr 18, 2005  •  Post A Comment

GSN has filed a lawsuit against programming contributor FremantleMedia in an attempt to halt production of a game show special planned for VH1.

In a suit filed March 29 in Los Angeles Superior Court, GSN said it pays “several million dollars annually” in license fees to FremantleMedia for exclusive use of its library of classic game show programming, which includes “Family Feud,” “Match Game” and “Card Sharks.”

Fremantle has retained limited rights to use the clips except “in a manner which frustrates the intent of the exclusivity provisions of this agreement,” according to the lawsuit.

GSN claims FremantleMedia is producing a special for a rival network that constitutes breach of contract. Sources said the special, “Greatest Game Show Moments,” is planned for VH1 and that GSN learned about the production when a Fremantle representative phoned a GSN librarian to ask for some “funny clips.”

“[The agreement was intended] to establish GSN’s network as the exclusive home on nonstandard television for the exhibition of the licensed episodes,” the lawsuit states.

The network seeks a judgment blocking Fremantle from producing the special.

The dispute threatens the relationship between GSN and the production house, which in addition to GSN’s “Whammy: The All New Press Your Luck,” also produces reality fare such as “American Idol” and “How Clean Is Your House?”

GSN and Fremantle had no comment.