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Friday, 27 September, 2002, 10:28 GMT 11:28 UK
Geldof takes action against 'Celebrity'
I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here!
I'm A Celebrity raised thousands for various charities
Bob Geldof is taking legal action against the makers of I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here, saying the idea was stolen from his own production company's show Survivor.

Geldof's company, Castaway Television Productions Ltd, which he co-owns with Charlie Parsons and Lord Alli, owns the rights to the reality TV Survivor format.

They are now attempting to sue Granada and London Weekend Television, who produced I'm A Celebrity... for copyright infringement.

The company said: "I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here was not made by or with the consent of Castaway, the owner of the worldwide rights in the international hit television series Survivor.

Castaway regards the protection of its intellectual property rights most seriously

Castaway Productions

"Survivor took many years to develop, a process costing hundreds of thousands of pounds."

Legal advice

The company added that their claim would not affect the charity element of the show, which saw eight minor celebrities living in the Australian jungle to raise money for good causes.

Granada have denied any copyright infringement and called the lawsuit "regrettable".

"We made it clear to Castaway that we don't consider our programme in any way infringes their rights in Survivor," said a spokesman.

"We have received strong legal advice and will, if necessary, vigorously defend any proceedings."
Bob Geldof
Geldof has also contested the Big Brother format

Survivor features 16 people stranded in a remote location, competing for a 1m prize. Viewers choose who to vote off the show, an element that also features in I'm A Celebrity...

Disappointing

Geldof and business partner Charlie Parsons originally devised the format for Survivor at their previous company Planet 24.

The pair sold the company in 1999 but retained the rights for the show, which has since been sold to more than a dozen countries.

It has been a huge hit in the US, where a fifth series is currently in production, but viewing figures for the two UK series have been disappointing.

Castaway have defended the show in the past.

In 2000 they took legal action against Big Brother producers Endemol, saying the Dutch company's format for the hit show was a rip-off of Survivor.

A court in Amsterdam eventually ruled that Big Brother did not infringe any copyright.

See also:

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27 Aug 02 | Entertainment
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