Nicole Scherzinger Files Complaint Against Pussycat Dolls Founder, Citing ‘Waste and Fraud’
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Nicole Scherzinger is hitting back at Pussycat Dolls founder Robin Antin in a countersuit stemming from a failed reunion of the girl group, alleging breach of contract and fraud, among other things, according to a new court filing obtained by Rolling Stone. The singer and TV talent show judge is seeking redress, including punitive damages, court fees and "other legal remedies" that the court deems necessary in the case.
The new lawsuit, filed in the Superior Court of California in Los Angeles County, alleges that Antin "broke her duties and obligations to Scherzinger, severely damaged PCD's goodwill and squandered funding for the proposed PCD reunion tour." ', ultimately damaging the Pussycat Dolls brand 'through self-dealing, waste and fraud', including accepting advances from concert promoter Live Nation and obliging Scherzinger to use her own private money to fund Pussycat Dolls promotional appearances and the recording of a new single finance. "Antin's mismanagement and proprietary dealings had so damaged PCD that a reunion tour on the terms Antin demanded was not economically feasible and could not be profitable for Antin, Scherzinger or the other members of PCD," the filing reads.
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In a statement to Rolling Stone, Antin's attorney, Richard Busch, said his client "strongly denies these allegations." He added: “This demand of the Cross is absolute desperation on their part. It is clear that the defendant wishes to try this case in the press by presenting the counterclaim to the press, but we will try the case in the courtroom and we have every confidence that Ms. Antin will prevail.”
Scherzinger's rep, meanwhile, declined to comment on the latest updates on the ongoing dispute.
The conflict between Antin and Scherzinger stems from a February 2019 agreement between the two women who wanted to transform the Pussycat Dolls through a new venture called PCD Worldwide that would create a "new generation" of the girl group and start an expansive 45-date -Reunion tour featuring the original Pussycat Dolls line-up - which, in addition to Scherzinger, also included Carmit Bachar, Ashley Roberts, Jessica Sutta, Melody Thornton and Kimberly Wyatt.
That reunion tour was originally scheduled to begin in 2019, but was pushed back to 2020 and again to 2021 due to the pandemic before Scherzinger finally announced its cancellation on January 22 this year, according to court documents.
Antin first filed her lawsuit against Scherzinger in September 2021, alleging that the singer broke her consent to participate in a Pussycat Dolls reunion tour unless her share of PCD Worldwide earnings was increased, citing potential financial losses from "opportunities she would have to forego in order to continue participating in the partnership," the BBC reported at the time. Antin's lawyers called Scherzinger's demands a form of "blackmail" that differed "materially from those already agreed" under the 2019 agreement. Earlier this year, Scherzinger's attorneys filed a response to Antin's original complaint, calling the case "a futile effort."
Scherzinger's latest counterclaim reveals that Antin first reached out to the singer in August 2017 with a proposal for a possible Pussycat Dolls reunion, but those talks never materialized. However, the filing alleges that "Antin negotiated in bad faith with Live Nation to promote the PCD reunion tour," noting "Scherzinger had already committed to attend the reunion" — negotiations, of which Scherzinger claims she had no knowledge of it and was not entitled to do so at the time.
Based on this allegedly bogus agreement, the complaint states that Antin received a $600,000 advance from Live Nation to fund the reunion in November of that year and used Scherzinger's name and likeness to promote the tour to ticket buyers. "Antin has not shown Scherzinger how she spent the $600,000 she received from Live Nation through [Pussycat Dolls Inc.]," Scherzinger's attorneys wrote. "To the best of our knowledge and belief, Antin squandered some or all of these funds on expenses other than planning and producing the PCD reunion, including personal expenses and expenses related to non-PCD business." In addition, court documents state that Antin the Pussycat Dolls reunion tour without Scherzinger's involvement after he secured Live Nation's advance by paying singer Pia Mia $100,000 to manage the group - a move that ultimately proved unprofitable.
Scherzinger's lawyers claim that Scherzinger's lawyers only entered into negotiations with Antin again with the controversial agreement of February 2019. To generate interest in the reunion, Scherzinger claims she used her own finances and connections to arrange and organize promotional appearances for the Pussycat Dolls in the UK version of The X Factor in late 2019, appearances in Australia in early 2020 and co - writing the group's 2020 comeback single "React". The singer states that she has not received any compensation for any of these activities and has spent a total of $163,858 for which she has not yet received a refund.
"Scherzinger hoped that she and Antin could reach an agreement that would result in a successful, financially viable tour that the legions of longtime PCD fans would deserve and enjoy," the filing reads.
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