(CN) – A theater production company is traveling the country performing copycat versions of the musical, “The Jersey Boys,” the original members of The Four Seasons, about which the musical is based, and the writers of the musical claim in Los Angeles Superior Court.
Four Seasons members Frankie Valli and Robert Gaudio, along with the musical’s co-writers, Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, sued five former cast members, claiming they ripped off the story, songs and staging from the original production.
The plaintiffs claim they own the rights to the play itself, along with all production rights.
Drew Gehling, Christian Hoff, Michael Longoria, Daniel Reichard, Mathew Scott and J. Robert Spencer starred in “The Jersey Boys” during its run on Broadway in New York City, until they quit to form their own production company, the plaintiffs say.
Now the actors have toured New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlantic City, advertising their musical as “The Boys” or “Broadway’s Jersey Boys,” the lawsuit states.
The defendants set up a Web site to advertise their rip-off production and pass themselves off as an authorized version of the original musical, plaintiffs claim.
The defendant actors also manufactured and sold pirated copies of the musical’s soundtrack, according to the complaint.
The musical has generated more than $831 million in gross box office revenue, the lawsuit states.
The plaintiffs want the performances stopped, and $150,000 for each copyrighted song the plaintiffs performed.
The plaintiffs are represented by Ronald Meister and Robert Clarida.