‘The Bachelor’ producers try to silence show spoilers ahead of finale

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Published March 11, 2013

| FoxNews.com

Steve Carbone, also known as Reality Steve, has been a staple for ABC’s “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” spoilers since he received an explosive tip in 2009—despite proposing to Melissa Rycroft, Jason Mesnick was going to dump her for Molly Malaney on a shocking “After the Final Rose.”

And he was right. 

Since then, Carbone has been successfully dropping “Bachelor” bombs left and right on RealitySteve.com, with the exception of a couple wrong facts throughout the years (Ali Fedotowsky or Brad Womack’s seasons, anyone?)

Producers have not been too pleased with Carbone’s antics.

NZK Productions, a division of Warner Bros., which produces “The Bachelor,” sued the blogger back in 2011, claiming that he was trying to persuade contestants to breach their confidentiality agreements by giving him information.  The lawsuit was settled, but Carbone was sued again in January for allegedly violating his settlement agreement and is currently involved in the litigation.

Carbone’s attorney, Richard Davis, told FOX 411 that the first lawsuit producers filed was settled by Carbone agreeing not to contact “The Bachelor” cast, crew or employees, and agreeing not to pay any third parties for non-public information regarding the shows.  

“This second suit was filed without the producers coming to Steve with any evidence of a violation of the settlement agreement,” Davis said, adding it is “entirely based on speculation.”

Carbone has filed motions to have the claims dismissed.   

“I’ve done nothing wrong,” Carbone told FOX 411. “The allegations against me contain no facts.  They’ve never offered a single bit of evidence to support their claims.”

Carbone added that he “doesn’t have to worry” because he didn’t violate the settlement agreement and that the lawsuit is “frivolous.”

“I have plenty of other ways [to get spoilers,]” he said.  “I don’t need to contact contestants for them.  I know I’m not doing anything wrong.”

Carbone does, however, (somewhat) understand where the producers are coming from in their anger.

“I think that they’re bothered, they put a lot of hard work into the show,” he said. “But nobody can blame me for what I do. I’m providing a service that plenty of people want. I’d be stupid to not post what I know.”

One of the things Carbone knows is who Bachelor Sean Lowe will pick in tonight’s finale, and he thinks his spoiler—which was released on his blog in November before the first preview of the season even aired—affected the way producers edited the show.

(Spoiler alert)

Carbone has a hunch that producers may have shown very few clips of his predicted winner Catherine Giudici’s interactions with Sean throughout the season to potentially throw off fans who may have read his spoilers.  

“Obviously there’s no way for me to prove it,” he said, but adds that none of the editing in past seasons has been as “blatant as it has been with Catherine.”

In a March 7 blog post, Carbone said he was counting down the days until he was “vindicated” from his spoiler and that in the beginning of the season there may have been some doubt “because of how little camera time Catherine got.”

“But all in all, people have come to accept that pretty much 95% of the spoilers that I post on this site are going to end up right,” he wrote.  

Okay, so he could be right, but he could be right and liable.    

Davis is confident in a victory for Carbone, however.  

“We believe the claims lack merit and that Steve will be vindicated once he gets his days in court,” Davis said.  “In that event, I suspect the producers will think long and hard before asserting another meritless claim in violation of the parties’ prior settlement.”

“At some point the producers will recognize that Steve is a journalist whose network of sources is so broad that he does not need to approached those persons restricted by the settlement agreement in order to obtain his information, but it may take a judge or a jury to bring that lesson home.”  

In the meantime, Carbone said he is “riding the wave” of the success of his now-full time job, which began 10 years ago as just a hobby.

“I enjoy writing and making people laugh,” he said.  

Warner Bros., which produces “The Bachelor,” declined to comment on the lawsuit.  

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2013/03/11/bachelor-producers-try-to-silence-show-spoilers-ahead-finale/