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Minnelli, Gest sue VH1

Jilted reality stars Liza Minnelli and her husband, David Gest, want VH1 to cough up as much as $23 million in damages after the music network axed their Liza & David reality show.

In a lawsuit filed in New York Supreme Court, the couple accused VH1 and MTV Networks of breaching their contract and stiffing them out of more than $1 million in promised fees.

Gest is seeking another $2 million for alleged defamation after an unnamed source told the New York Post Gest was a "control freak," "impossible to work with" and "almost insane." He also wants $10 million in related punitive damages.

The couple's claim asserted that VH1 unlawfully terminated their show and profited from "thousands of dollars in free publicity." Another breach, the lawsuit said: VH1 used about four minutes of footage from Minnelli's and Gest's elaborate, star-studded wedding for a Liza & David wedding special without their approval.

VH1 -- which canceled the show Oct. 29 and still has about 60 hours of footage -- had no comment on the lawsuit.