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GH creators file suit against ABC
Posted Wednesday, April 27, 2011 10:23:11 AM
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The daughters of the creators of General Hospital have filed suit against ABC, saying that the network has been dishonest with its record-keeping and owes money for syndication and licensing. ABC dismisses the claims.

ABC now has troubles with all three of its daytime drama series. Two weeks after the network canceled All My Children and One Life to Live, ABC is now facing a lawsuit filed by the estate of Frank and Doris Hursley, the couple who created the show back in 1963.

According to a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Los Angeles Superior Court by the Hursleys' daughters -- Bridget Dobson, Deborah Hardy, and Polly Keusnik -- ABC has been short-changing their parents' estate for years. The charges stem from an agreement Frank and Doris allegedly cut with ABC decades ago.

The Hursleys were "granted 10 percent [...] of the net profits from domestic syndication [...] and the same profit percentage with respect to foreign syndication of all shows produced and telecast by ABC after January 3, 1969," the lawsuit contends.

The complaint also alleges that royalties were to have been paid out for merchandising, books, movie rights, and the like. It is unclear if, but likely that, these terms would also apply to General Hospital's two spinoffs, Port Charles and Night Shift.

Since the Hursleys' daughter allege that ABC has been dishonest in reporting its financials, the complaint seeks unspecified damages and asks that a judge order a forensic audit of ABC's books to determine how much money was made off of General Hospital and how much should be paid out to the Hursley heirs.

Citing an ABC insider, Soap Opera Digest says that the network feels that lawsuit has no merit and is "a last ditch effort to get blood from a stone."

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