Life really is a trip for Bristol Palin, whose new reality series is once again coming under fire.
Disney star Kyle Massey and his brother Chris Massey filed a lawsuit Tuesday in Los Angeles Federal Court alleging they created a reality show for Bristol Palin, in which they were to costar along with Palin, before they were cut out of the project and it was re-imagined as “Bristol Palin: Life’s a Tripp” for Lifetime.
It was first announced last year that Palin was to star in a reality show with Kyle Massey — the two had become friends after appearing together on “Dancing With the Stars” — on the Bio Channel in which Kyle and Chris would help single mom Bristol adjust to life in L.A. It even reportedly had a name, “Bristol-ogy 101.”
According to the court papers, the Massey brothers claim a producer named David McKenzie “hijacked” the project, made it all about Bristol and dumped Kyle and Chris from the show. They are suing McKenzie and Associated Television International (Bristol herself is not named in the suit) for “copyright infringement, breach of contract and unfair competition, seeking a permanent injunction and monetary damages,” according to Deadline.
The Masseys are demanding a hefty sum, claiming they were originally guaranteed $500,000 to participate in the show, says TMZ, and seeking an additional amount for allegedly creating the show, which they are also attempting to shut down.
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“It is unfortunate that after months of trying to resolve this matter the professional way, we were left with no other course of action than to take legal action to protect ourselves,” said Angel Massey, the mother of the acting brothers, said in a statement to E! Online. “If you read the entire complaint, and particularly pages 8-11, you will see how we created the show, registered the show and did all the leg work to bring this idea to TV and to the defendants, who stole our concept.”
“Bristol Palin: Life’s a Tripp” premiered Tuesday night on Lifetime. Watch a wild clip from the show above, in which Bristol gets into a heated exchange with a bar patron who says her mother Sarah Palin is “evil.”
That bar-heckling Palin-hater, talent manager Stephen Hanks, is now suing Bristol Palin and Lifetime for defamation. In a lawsuit filed last Wednesday, Hanks claims he had not given the show his permission to be filmed. The incident at a bar on L.A.’s Sunset Strip in September 2011 went on to become highly publicized – see the ugly fight in the clip above.