Prospect Park Sues ABC For $25M Over ONE LIFE TO LIVE & ALL MY CHILDREN Licensing Agreement

Prospect Park has field a breach of contract lawsuit against ABC, which licensed the shows to Prospect Park two years ago. Deadline was first to report the news..

According to the complaint, which is now being filed with the Los Angeles Superior Court, Prospect Park claims that ABC has been breaking the licensing agreement and sabotaging Prospect Park’s efforts to continue ALL MY CHILDREN and ONE LIFE TO LIVE online.  They refer to the day ABC canceled AMC and OLTL as "Soapocalyspe".

“These shows will go forward, and Prospect will address its rights in Court,” the suit said. "Regardless of how successful Prospect may be, the fact remains that ABC did not deliver what it promised, Prospect did not get what it paid for, and Prospect is now entitled to recover more millions of dollars in damages for ABC’s egregious conduct.” The complaint pegs the monetary damages sought at at least $25 million.

The lawsuit follows a couple of months of building up tensions and threats of legal action between Prospect Park and ABC centered on OLTL actors who had been starring on ABC’s General Hospital since the cancellation of OLTL by ABC. Prospect Park attempted to get them back, which created a standoff with ABC. The last straw came last week when ABC announced that OLTL’s Kristen Alderson, Michael Easton and Roger Howarth will return to GH on May 10, presumably as new characters.

According to the lawsuit, after taking over AMC and OLTL in 2011, Prospect Park, in “a gesture of good will”, allowed ABC “to borrow seven OLTL characters to appear on a limited basis” on the network’s soap General Hospital for the actors playing them can have employment. (It is understood that, despite having the characters on a temporary basis, ABC signed the actors playing them in long-term deals, making their return to OLTL even more difficult. Howarth recently made a short-term deal with Prospect Park to do a stint on OLT before returning to GH.) Prospect Park claims that in the arrangement, they retained “approval rights over ABC’s use of the OLTL characters. But “for over a year, ABC outright failed and refused to consult with Prospect on any storylines involving these characters, rendering Prospect’s approval rights meaningless.” With that, “in the ultimate act of bad faith, ABC inexplicably killed off two OLTL characters on loan to GH by having their car forced off a cliff. ABC effectively killed another major OLTL character, who was not even licensed to ABC, by revealing that this long-standing OLTL character is in fact another character (alter ego) on GH.”

Prospect Park also claims ABC breached the two side’s licensing agreement by refusing to hand over to Prospect Park the URLs for the two soaps the company had purchased, onelifetolive.com and allmychildren.com. “These URLs are not only critical to establishing public awareness for the re-launch, but they are part of the rights paid for by Prospect. It is understood that ABC also recently declined to air ads for OLTL because it features prominently an actor who is on GH.

Despite the fact that ABC retains some ownership in AMC and OLTL under the licensing agreement, Prospect Park argues that ABC is trying to sabotage the two show’s transition online. The complaint claims that “at least one ABC executive” involved in the decisions to how to handle OLTL actors on GH, “has openly declared his desire to see Prospect fail” and suggests that the network’s actions may be driven by “a basic fear of embarrassment if Prospect succeeds.”

Read the complaint here.

In an announcement earlier this year, Prospect Park’s The Online Network revealed its plans to re-introduce the beloved franchise, through a groundbreaking content deal that will bring premium first-run, broadcast-quality programming to a mass market audience via the Internet. Brand new 30-minute episodes of ALL MY CHILDREN and ONE LIFE TO LIVE will be launched each weekday starting April 29 and available to stream online in HD (when available) via the free Hulu.com service and to subscribers of Hulu Plus making these venerable dramas available in a new format that suits the viewing habits of the digital generation. In addition, the iTunes Store will offer both series via iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Apple TV and Mac or PC.

RELATED:
- LAW SUIT: A View Through the Looking Glass at the Prospect Park vs. ABC Lawsuit
- ONE LIFE TO LIVE & ALL MY CHILDREN Fans Get 'MORE' With Weekly Friday Recap Shows
- How Do You Watch The New ALL MY CHILDREN & ONE LIFE TO LIVE? Suzy Homemaker (aka Cady McClain) Explains
- Hot Chelle Rae Gets 'Hung Up' On ALL MY CHILDREN, Appears May 9 (Spoiler Alert)
- ALL MY CHILDREN First Week Preview [SPOILER ALERT]
- INTERVIEW: Erika Slezak On The Return Of ONE LIFE TO LIVE
- INTERVIEW: Catching Up With ONE LIFE TO LIVE's Kelley Missal
- INTERVIEW: On the Set of ONE LIFE TO LIVE with Rob Gorrie
- INTERVIEW: ONE LIFE TO LIVE's Laura Harrier Is Excited To Be In Llanview
- ONE LIFE TO LIVE First Week Day-by-Day Preview [SPOILER ALERT]
- INTERVIEW: Getting To Know ALL MY CHILDREN's Denyse Tontz
- ALL MY CHILDREN "First Day of School" Video Now Available On iTunes
- FX Canada Will Air ALL MY CHILDREN & ONE LIFE TO LIVE Beginning April 29
- Prospect Park/TOLN News Hub

30 comments:

  1. This ish is getting crazier by the minute.

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  2. Why couldn't ABC have just let it go and focus on GH. Everyone could have won.

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  3. Who is the one who is an alter ego? Sounds like PP is mad that they lost the actors. That is their own fault for not starting production on the shows when promised over a year ago.

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  4. I agree Thomas PP took too long for the shows to begin and the actors were out of work and have families to support. I watch GH and have been happy to watch them there. I can't see how GH iss going to have them become new characters when they interacted so much with the old actors.

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  5. I agree with Prospect Park here. ABC not only killed off characters but made the OLTL characters who appeared on GH completely unlikeable. This DID damage PP's efforts to successfully reboot OLTL.

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  6. FYI...the URLs now point to TOLN's website. I happened to check these a few days ago and they still directed to ABC.com at that time.

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  7. who is the alter ego? can't be mcbain because they didn't kill him off.....I do think killing tea's baby, hope and cole was dumb.

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  8. I assumed the alter ego was Tomas who GH implied was really Lorenzo Alcazar (Ted King played both roles).

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  9. Roger,

    Could ABC have some of the same reasoning/concerns that P&G has about streaming TV programs, in this case serials, online?

    I ask because P&G doesn't seem to want to fully give up rights to 'As The World Turns' or 'Guiding Light' just as ABC doesn't seem to fully want to give up rights to 'All My Children' or 'One Life to Live.' There seems to be something more to all of this. What's the scoop? I know you must know. :-)

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  10. I like Todd and John on GH and don't have any interest in watching online soaps. ABC needs to get rid of the Chew and put soaps back.

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  11. I hope PP wins...that'll show ABC they can't just walk all over the fans of those soaps and get away with it. I completely agree with PP's position on this. ABC truly has been hindering things, and they did everything else they are being accused of. The worst of which being cancelling the shows in the first place.

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  12. They killed another character, baby Victor Delgado!

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  13. Im with you OLTLfan...I too hope PP wins as well, it would serve ABC right since they were stupid to cancel AMC and OLTL in the first place!

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  14. I stopped watching GH the very day ABC announced they were cancelling AMC and OLTL.

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  15. The whole thing sucks for everyone the actors,the fan, and the shows. We as fans need to remember our shows need our support or we lose them all together.

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  16. Smart move by Prospect Park, need the money, ABC has it. But don't hurt the actors

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  17. PP's claim that ABC signed the actors playing them in long-term deals, making their return to OLTL even more difficult is ridiculous. They got the characters back when they demanded them back, the only thing they couldn't get was the actors to agree to return, in RH's case sign on long term but that's not something ABC has any control over. If ABC bringing back the actors as new characters is the reason why PP is suing like I suspect, they need to suck it up and accept that they will have to recast the roles.

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  18. i get that prospect park would be angry about those characters being killed off. BUT it's a soap opera. Hope and Cole's body were never found...Write an intricately improbable story where they are found and come back?!

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  19. I loved those OLTL actors/characters on GH as the new team successfully wove them into the stories. I have no interest in the return of Stephen Clay or the vampire story, I loved Starr with Michael, and Todd is a hoot. I hope this pissing match is over soon and we get back to the business of storytelling.

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  20. I hope that PP wins this lawsuit,it,ll serve ABC right for cancelling two soaps that have become an institution in our everyday lives

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  21. Its all executive nonsense. They're suing for more than they paid for the shows, I think that's what its all about. Bored with the whole thing already.

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  22. I fail to see how GH keeping Llanview and its citizens alive in the hearts and minds of soap fans was damaging to Prospect Park's efforts to relaunch OLTL, regardless of how the characters were written. As a writer, I would see writing OLTL around what happened on GH as a creative challenge rather than a lawsuit.

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  23. The alter ego is Tomas/Alcazar.

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  24. They said GH and ABC effectively killed another major OLTL character, not actually killing him off just ruining their storyline for him by connecting him to GH.

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  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. People are forgetting the fact that PP said they weren't going to film OLTL and AMC last year shortly after OLTL went off the air and they didn't have any future plans to do so...

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  27. People still really watch these stupid shows???Guess some people don't have enough drama in their lives and need to feedon others drama. Like I care if some rich *itch om the soaps has another mystery baby LOL NOT!!!

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  28. Catchryder, you do realize you are on a website called welovesoaps.net right?

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  29. Abc Once Again continues to anger fans with there actions I am so glad I shut the channel off my tube and will continue to that is so wrong hope PP Wins sad how abc toying with PP and fans won't give abc the satisfaction of watching GH even though I like it Nope Glad OLTL And AMC back

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