20th TV sued by 'Dharma' players


Citing improper accounting practices, "Dharma & Greg's" co-creator, writer, executive producer and lead actress have filed suit against 20th Century Fox TV, claiming that they are owed $15 million in profit-participation payments.

At issue in the state court lawsuit, filed Oct. 1 in Santa Monica, is the modified adjusted gross receipts agreement with co-creators Dottie Dartland and Chuck Lorre.

The plaintiffs claim that Fox improperly deducted those modified adjusted gross receipts payments to Dartland and Lorre from the gross receipts of the series, and that significantly understated their share of the modified adjusted gross receipts.

The plaintiffs include Jenna Elfman, Dartland, Michael Slessinger, executive producer James Burrows and More-Medavoy Management. Lorre is not a party to the litigation.

A Fox spokesman said the studio does not comment on pending litigation.

The lawsuit's claims are broken down by the percentage each plaintiff claims that they're entitled to get. For example, Elfman and Slessinger, who acted as a consultant with regard to creation, development and licensing of the series, claim that Fox agreed to pay each of them 5% of the modified adjusted gross receipts.

Dartland, however, and her 4 to 6 Foot Prods. was to be paid 7.5% of the modified gross receipts and 15% of the net profits, according to the complaint. She claims that Fox deducted Lorre's payments first before calculating her payments.