According to Keith Olbermann, his former bosses at Current TV are "no more than dilettantes portraying entertainment industry executives."
The Countdown host, who was fired last week, sued the cable news network Thursday for breach of contract, alleging that the up-and-coming liberal powerhouse he thought he had joined was actually a place where "dysfunction permeated all levels of the organization."
That, and he wants the rest of the $50 million he signed up for.
In response to the suit, Current TV said in a statement to E! News that Olbermann was fired for "serial, material breaches of contract, including the failure to show up at work, sabotaging the network and attacking Current and its executives...We will be happy to engage on the law and its facts in the appropriate form."
The network had previously stated that Olbermann missed 19 out of 41 workdays in January and February and refused to promote other Current shows besides Countdown.
"It is well established that over his professional career Mr. Olbermann has specialized in pounding the table," Current continued. "However, Mr. Olbermann, by filing his false and malicious lawsuit, has now put this matter into a legal process where there will be an objective review of the facts. We hope Mr. Olbermann understands that when it comes to the legal process, he is actually required to show up."
In his lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court and obtained by E! News, Olbermann describes various alleged "logistical nightmares" and "technical failures" that occurred when he was there, from the firing of Mark Rosenthal ("its only experienced cable senior executive") to a frequently freezing teleprompter to a lack of advertising initiatives.
Basically, according to Olbermann—or the "Olbermann Broadcasting Empire," as the plaintiff is also referred to in the suit—Current's leaders didn't know what they were doing and they weren't giving him the "unprecedented level of control" they supposedly promised him when they contracted him for five years and named him Chief News Officer.
Wow, no one sues quite like Keith Olbermann, do they?
According to the veteran talker, he's been paid $10 million for his first year of services. But, he said on The Late Show With David Letterman on Tuesday, "The nice judge will decide if I get more of my money."
Al Gore and businessman Joel Hyatt launched Current TV in 2005.
Olbermann tweeted later in the day: "Thanks to all who read the lawsuit and have expressed their support. To everybody else: It's a great read, and 100% factual :)"
—Reporting by Baker Machado