All My Children and One Life to Live were famous for their scripted dramas, but a conflict between the company behind both shows and ABC has led the drama to the courtroom.
Prospect Park, the company backing the online reboot of the canceled ABC series', sued the network for $25 million. The suit alleged that the Walt Disney-owned network engaged in sabotage over the company's efforts to bring the soap operas to the Internet. Chief among the complaints is licensing, the use of characters, storylines and failure to be consulted.
"In an ultimate act of bad faith, ABC inexplicably killed off two One Life to Live characters on loan to General Hospital by having their car forced off a cliff," the suit said.
Prospect Park was angered by how ABC used some of its soap opera actors, with their characters getting integrated into the General Hospital cast.
"In other instances, ABC damaged One Life to Live characters by, among other things, creating absurd story lines, having characters do things they would never do, and destroying critical character relationships popular with soap fans," the lawsuit alleged.
The suit also stated that ABC signed the OLTL actors to long term deals with the network and in doing so, the actors had no incentive to return to their previous roles on the soap opera.
ABC has yet to comment on the legal matter.
The two daytime dramas were canceled in 2011 amid fan outcry and boycotts were even organized against the network and its replacement shows. Fans received a reprieve, however, when Prospect Park decided that it would bring the shows back to life in an online medium.
The rebooted shows launch on April 29 through Hulu and will be available for purchase on iTunes. The suit also accused ABC of wanting the new endeavor to be a failure as they did not want to face the embarrassment of the soaps succeeding. However, Prospect Park, which is demanding a jury trial, was not deterred.
Jeff Kwatinetz and Frank Rich, who own Prospect Park, released the following statement about the suit:
"Over and over again our effort to bring these shows to audiences has faced challenges, and yet we along with the actors, the writers, producers and the directors as well as our fans have confronted and then overcome these challenges, and we have every confidence that we will prevail again."