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Keith Olbermann Suing Current TV for Breach of Contract, Wants $70M

Screenshot/Current
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A week after being shown the door from his "Countdown" gig at Current TV, Keith Olbermann has filed suit against the network in Los Angeles, alleging breach of contract.Court documents show that Olbermann was promised--but not delivered--an "unprecedented" level of control over his talking heads news show, and the resources to help create "a new progressive network" with "Countdown" as the centerpiece, according to City News Service.

Olbermann, who has steadily built a reputation as a difficult employee, had taken his "Countdown" to the Al Gore-founded network when he found himself freed of his gig at MSNBC suddenly in Janaury 2011.

The network was undergoing a significant overhaul, moving away from its quirky "viewer-created" content delivered in short video "pod" segments introduced by hipsters standing in a Lautner-esque treehouse mod pad, and into the harder more leftist news channel critical of the political machine.

Olbermann's suit contends the network meddled too much in his show, made him look bad in the press, and fired him "without cause" while owing him as much as $70 million. The suit also points out that Current was struggling to "keep the lights on" let alone pay Olbermann his due.

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Last night on David Letterman's show, Olbermann likened himself to a $10 million chandelier needing a place to hang, saying that he had not been wise enough before inking the paperwork to figure out how the network was going to pay him $10 million a year for five years.

The broadcaster notes in the suit that his firing was "the latest in a series of increasingly erratic and unprofessional actions undertaken by Current's senior management," and that Olbermann is pretty let down that Gore, co-found Joel Hyatt, and other Current staffers were not as ideal as perhaps people think; actually, Olbermann says they are "no more than dilettantes portraying entertainment industry executives."

Current has not commented on the suit.