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X Factor: Tribune Sues Marvel

Tribune Entertainment is suing comic-book empire Marvel Enterprises for $100 million, alleging "fraudulent acts, negligent misrepresentations and breach of contract" by Marvel over Tribune’s weekly syndicated show, Mutant X

Tribune claims the comic book company mislead Tribune about the nature of the TV rights it had awarded to Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp. regarding its hit film franchise, X-Men
. Marvel approached Tribune with an idea for the TV series, Mutant X
, and pushed Tribune to take advantage of X-Men
’s success as it marketed the show, assuring Tribune that any TV rights Marvel had granted Fox would not interfere with Tribune’s efforts.

When Tribune took Marvel’s advice, Fox sued Tribune. Tribune says it spent millions of dollars settling the suit with Fox, and that settlement occurred Oct. 3. Now that the two parties have settled their dispute, Tribune is in turn is suing Marvel to recoup its costs.

"As a direct and proximate result of the Marvel’s misrepresentations and the Fox litigation, Mutant X
has not been as successful or profitable as it would have been, and, to date, Tribune has not realized any profit at all from the production and distribution of Mutant X
, but has instead lost millions of dollars," Tribune wrote in its complaint.

Tribune filed the lawsuit in the Supreme Court of the State of New York. Law firm Frankfurt Kurnit Lein & Selz is representing Tribune.

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.