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Friday, July 19, 2024 | Back issues
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Production Group Demands $5M From Champ Car Series

LOS ANGELES (CN) - Mullin Production Group demands $5 million from the Champ World Car Series, claiming it hired Mullin to film its 2008 season, despite knowing that it would probably file for bankrupty and cancel the season.

Mullin says Gerald Forsythe, Kevin Kalkhoven, Paul Gentilozzi, and Dan Pettit hired it to film the 2006 and 2007 racing seasons. Champ owners asked Mullin to return in 2008, allegedly claiming its outstanding bills were on their way. Champ owed Mullin $400,000 for covering a 2007 Mexico City race and $505,000 for cancelling a contracted race, the lawsuit claims. But Mullin says Champ was already negotiating a merger that would cost Mullin its 2008 contract.

Unaware of the merger, Mullin says it bought a $210,000 mobile editing facility in preparation for the season.

In January 2008, Mullin claims it started to hear rumors about a merger between Champ and Indianapolis Racing League. If that was true, Mullin would be out of a job, since Indianapolis already had television producers and other contractors lined up. The defendants allegedly denied the rumors, both in conversations with Mullin and in articles in industry magazines.

But two months later, Champ filed for bankruptcy. Mullin says that was a calculated move. According to the lawsuit, the defendants operated Champ at a loss in 2006 and 2007, accepting the yearly losses because they formed Champ in order to better service their own racing hobbies and their other businesses -- selling engines and car jets, and running racing-related events. Despite their predictions of a $22 million loss in 2008, they allegedly never warned Mullin that they might cancel the 2008 season.

Mullin is represented in Superior Court by William Conkle.

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