American Idol Simon Fuller Suing Fox For X Factor

American Idol creator and producer Simon Fuller is suing the Fox network over X Factor fees he has not received. According to a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, Fuller negotiated a hefty executive producer fee and credit on the show as part of a settlement of a 2004 copyright-infringement lawsuit. The network is refusing to honor the deal and says the suit is without merit.

Back when Cowell launched X Factor, Fuller sued, claiming the show was a blatant rip-off of Idol, which had aired in the U.K. and U.S. for several seasons with Simon Cowell as the lead judge. The problem threatened to derail America’s No. 1 show, so Fox helped broker a 2005 settlement that kept Cowell on American Idol for five seasons. This also kept the X Factor out of the United States until 2011.

Fuller agreed to take Pop Idol off the air in the U.K. (giving X Factor a big boost there), but he became entitled to a fee on X Factor and a credit on the show if it ever came to America.

In his lawsuit against Fox, Fuller includes an excerpt from a 2005 letter that said the network would make him the executive producer with a fee that is “commensurate with his duties and stature in the entertainment industry.” It was that promise, Fuller said, that led him to end his legal fight with Cowell over the British version of “The X Factor.” A spokesperson for Fuller said he has “prudently attempted to settle this matter privately but the other parties have refused to honor the original contract, leaving him no other choice but to pursue legal action.”

Fuller is also the co-creator and executive producer of the Fox TV reality show “So You Think You Can Dance.” He is currently the manager of performers and entertainers including David and Victoria Beckham, Annie Lennox, Lewis Hamilton, Andy Murray, Carrie Underwood, Will Young, Emma Bunton, Lisa Marie Presley, Cathy Dennis, Spice Girls and many others. He is in partnership with Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony for their upcoming reality show.

By: Pat Prescott
Published: Jul 21, 2021
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