19 Entertainment says it will let Idols out of their contract if they have record deal offers

Although American Idol contestants are locked into a three-month contract, 19 Entertainment said “if the contestant is in danger of losing a recording contract because of that, [19] generally will allow them out of their contract.”

That’s what a spokesperson told MTV News, which reports “that ‘Idol’ contestants are generally required to sign a contract that gives Sony/BMG exclusive rights for a period of three months.”

MTV News followed up on American Idol 7 contestant Josiah Leming’s publicist’s claims that he was being threatened by 19 Entertainment after landing a record deal with Warner Brothers.

But the spokesperson told MTV News that Josiah’s contract expired “a few months ago, so we are not sure what controversy people are talking about. … 19 Entertainment wishes Josiah the best of luck on his album release.”

What could the controversy be about? Generating publicity for an album release? Josiah is playing dumb. “Honestly, legally, I have no real idea [about the rumored lawsuit], you know? I had a good experience on the show, and I’m thankful that I am where I am right now, and they definitely helped push me along. … I wasn’t very familiar with the contract, so I’m not sure what repercussions would come of it,” he said.

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