Dumped From 'Baby Talk,' Sellecca Files Suit

From United Press International

Actress Connie Sellecca was reported today as having filed a $1.5-million lawsuit Tuesday against Columbia Pictures Television and producer Edward Weinberger for firing her from the upcoming television series, "Baby Talk."

The Superior Court lawsuit filed Tuesday said Weinberger "made every effort to beat (Sellecca) up emotionally by verbally abusing Sellecca and denigrating Sellecca's rights to creatively participate in the production of the series," the lawsuit said.

On Aug. 10, Weinberger "in a fit of rage shouted an ultimatum at Sellecca that if she wished to continue working on the series she would have to unconditionally submit to his authority," the lawsuit said.

The next day Weinberger announced Sellecca would not star in the series and said he would make sure she "would never again work for NBC or ABC networks," the lawsuit said.

Sellecca, 35, who previously starred in the television drama "Hotel," had been promoting the series through photo sessions and talk shows up until Aug. 1, the lawsuit said.

The series, which is scheduled to debut on network television this fall, is based on the hit 1989 feature film, "Look Who's Talking." No replacement for Sellecca's role has been announced.

Her suit also alleges Weinberger breached a contract to pay Sellecca $45,000 within seven days of completing the "Baby Talk" television pilot by paying only $25,000 to date.

The lawsuit said Sellecca had a March agreement to do the "Baby Talk" television pilot for $45,000 and that if the network ordered a series, Sellecca would be hired on a "pay or play" basis and be guaranteed $45,000 an episode for the first season for a minimum of seven episodes.

Sellecca also was to get 7.5% interest of the net proceeds of each episode, an office and secretary, the lawsuit said.

The suit, which alleges breach of contract, fraud, conspiracy and intentional infliction of emotional distress, seeks $1.5 million in general damages and unspecified punitive damages.

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