Last fall, sports writer and TV producer Todd Gallagher filed a lawsuit against the William Morris Endeavor agency and Media Rights Capital, the companies behind the Shaq Vs TV show. Gallagher contended that they stole his idea for the series and asked for $5 million.
Filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, the complaint alleged nine causes of action against the companies, including breach of implied contract and fiduciary duty. According to Gallagher, William Morris Endeavor agents Ivo Fisher and Lance Klein were tapped by Gallagher to shop a reality show version of his book, Andy Roddick Beat Me with a Frying Pan.
In the book, the author competes against a different professional athlete each week. Gallagher says that two networks offered to buy the show but he rejected the deals against the advice of the agents. He would have lost creative control and the right to host the show and the agency wanted to push for a big name instead.
Gallagher first learned of the very similar Shaq Vs series when he saw commercials on television. Shaq maintains that he came up with the idea for the show himself.
Now, Gallagher’s suit has been settled out of court. Gallagher supposedly received about $500,000. According to Gallagher’s lawyer, the “matter has been amicably resolved.”
Though the show received lackluster ratings last summer, ABC renewed the show for a second year. Season two of Shaq Vs kicks off tonight. Last season, Shaq battled other professional athletes in their particular fields.
This time around, he’ll take on athletes as well as pros from other fields. They include racer Dale Earnhardt Jr., singer Justin Bieber, host Rachael Ray, illusionists Penn & Teller, spelling bee champ Kavya Shivashankar, boxer Sugar Shane Mosley, and hot dog eating champion Joey Chestnut.
What do you think? Will you tune in to see season two of Shaq Vs?