OctoMom-Allred Smackdown Looms
[Update: Associated Press reported Saturday that Suleman has signed a reality TV deal for each of her 14 children with Eyeworks worth $250,000 over three years. Eyeworks will contribute 15 percent of the gross compensation into a "Coogan account" for the children, who won't be able to access the money until they turn 18.]
Well, it took them long enough, but Nadya Suleman's side has responded to a lawsuit filed by Los Angeles uber-lawyer Gloria Allred and former child actor Paul Petersen with its own suit. Last May Allred and Petersen petitioned the Orange County Superior Court to appoint a conservator to look after the financial interests of the infant octuplets belonging to Suleman, who is better known as OctoMom. The reason wasn't because Suleman was a childbearing-obsessed single mom without a job, but because she allegedly was exploiting her children for profit. Namely, by allowing RadarOnline into her home to record life at OctoCentral without paying too much heed to California's child-labor laws regarding film shoots. Petersen heads a child-actor advocacy group called A Minor Consideration.
Associated Press reports that Suleman's attorney, Jeff Czech, claims that an entertainment lawyer has been retained by Suleman, obviating the need for a court-appointed conservator. Suleman is reportedly still considering reality TV program opportunities, including proposals from U.K.-based Eyeworks.
According to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune's Octorazzi blog, Czech filed a motion Friday to dismiss the Allred-Petersen petition. Perhaps inadvertently striking at the very foundation of modern news reporting, Czech claimed the original lawsuit was "based on a bunch of blogs and interviews on the Internet."
Suleman and Allred are scheduled to square off in court next Monday, July 27. Meanwhile, Octorazzi's nemesis blog, NadyaSuleman.com, reports that a judge has denied London-based Eyeworks' request to film the proceedings.