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Melissa Joan Hart sued by former manager in breach of contract case

Many New Jersey children who grew up in the 90s were probably familiar with the Nickelodeon show “Clarissa Explains It All,” and the actress who played Clarissa, Melissa Joan Hart. Many of those children who are now adults may be surprised to find out that the actress is involved in a legal entanglement with her former manager. Melissa Joan Hart’s former manager has sued her for breach of contract.

Melissa Joan Hart’s former manager filed the breach of contract suit in a Los Angeles Superior Court yesterday. The suit claims breach of oral contract, fraud and unjust enrichment. The former manager believes he helped Hart resuscitate her career and says he has not been paid commission for his work on Hart’s latest project “Melissa & Joey.”

After “Clarissa Explains It All” came to a close in the mid 1990s, Melissa Joan Hart starred in the television series “Sabrina, the Teenage Witch.” The hit television show ran from 1996 to 2003. According to the breach of contract suit, Hart’s former manager began to represent her in August 2006 and helped her rekindle her career after Sabrina came to an end. The suit claims the manager’s, “advice and counsel was integral in thrusting Hart back into the Hollywood spotlight to once again be advertised as ‘America’s Sweetheart.”

Hart’s former manager says he helped Hart gain roles in commercials, appear on “Dancing With the Stars” and gain a leading role on an ABC sitcom called “Melissa & Joey.” According to the suit, Melissa Joan Hart fired the manager in March 2010 without explanation. Since being fired, the former manager asserts that Hart failed to pay his 10 percent commission from “Melissa & Joey” and has labeled Hart as “cheap.”

The former manager believes he is owed $56,250 plus additional commission earned from Hart’s increased compensation from the latest season of “Melissa & Joey.” The former manager also claims that Hart stopped paying him commissions in 2008 and Hart admitted she was not paying the commissions because she was “just being cheap.”

Source: Reuters, “Melissa Joan Hart sued by former manager for ‘Being Cheap’,” Tim Kenneally, Oct. 27, 2011

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