Disney Ordered To Fork Over $269 Million In “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?” Suit
The Mouse just got cheesed….
The TV production company that created the hit television game show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? is celebrating a multimillion dollar victory over The Walt Disney Co.
Celador was awarded $269.2 million in damages Wednesday after a jury in Los Angeles ruled the company had not received a fair share of profits from Disney’s screening of the program.
Although the Regis Philbin-hosted Millionaire was a primetime hit for the Disney-owned ABC between 1999-2000, Celador producers claim they were told that the show was operating in the red. They were even presented with doctored documents to support the claim.
These days, TODAY host Meredith Vieira fronts a syndicated half-hour adaptation of the one-time ratings juggernaut.
Over the years, there have been numerous lawsuits questioning the studio’s accounting practices and suggesting that deception may be being used to cut into the profits of producers and other Disney personnel.
The corporation plans to appeal.