Keith Olbermann sues Current TV over ouster

LOS ANGELES Thu Apr 5, 2012 7:06pm EDT

Keith Olbermann at the NBC Universal summer press tour in Beverly Hills, California July 21, 2008. REUTERS/Fred Prouser/Files

Keith Olbermann at the NBC Universal summer press tour in Beverly Hills, California July 21, 2008.

Credit: Reuters/Fred Prouser/Files

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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - TV commentator Keith Olbermann on Thursday filed a lawsuit against Current TV over his dismissal, claiming breach of contract by the network and saying he is owed as much as $70 million.

Olbermann, who was fired a week ago after about a year on the small progressive public affairs channel, said he was "enticed to leave" his old job at cable channel MSNBC and join Current with the promise of editorial control and professional support.

But Olbermann described Current TV founders Joel Hyatt, former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and Current management as "no more than dilettantes portraying entertainment industry executives."

His lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, said he was owed between $50 million and $70 million in cash and equity compensation. Olbermann had taken an undisclosed equity stake in Current when he joined in 2011.

(Reporting By Jill Serjeant; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte and Eric Beech)

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