Producers sue ABC, Simon Cowell over Million Dollar Idea

ABC’s plans to air a Simon Cowell-produced show called The Million Dollar Idea didn’t sit well with the producers of a similar show that aired two years ago in Minnesota and elsewhere.

Jean M. Golden and Todd P. Walker produced and hosted a syndicated talent search show that sought inventors with original ideas. According to The New York Times, they “said that they had pitched a national version of ‘Million Dollar Idea’ in March 2004 to Andrea Wong, executive vice president for alternative programming at ABC.”

Thus, they say the network’s plans to air the show is a “patent rip-off” of their concept. They’re suing to prevent “ABC from putting its show on the air.” ABC had no comment.

ABC TV Is Sued Over Plan for Show [The New York Times]

The Sing-Off loses its star

Ben Folds

NBC's super-fun December a capella singing competition The Sing-Off is returning, but without its star judge, Ben Folds, and only as a two-hour special. Those are really depressing changes for a series that proved itself to be a super-fun show when it returned last December.


A film director talks about becoming a reality TV character

Anna Martemucci

What is it like to have your life turned into reality TV? Director Anna Martemucci, one of the two directors featured on Starz' exceptional reality series, talks about that, the competition, and her collaboration with her husband and brother-in-law.

Plus: How the show's producers tried to keep the $250,000 competition fair.

about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.