Ozzy Osbourne sues AEG for illegally tying his commitment of performing at O2 Arena with gig at LA Staples Center
Ozzy Osbourne's manager Sharon filed a lawsuit against AEG that seeks to end the block-booking practice in live entertainment.
Famed rockstar and reality TV star, Ozzy Osbourne has sued the international entertainment giant AEG in a class action antitrust lawsuit, over illegally extending his commitment of performing at London’s O2 Arena with Staples Center during his LA tour, as reported by Pitchfork.
The dispute has arisen over AEG prohibiting Osbourne from performing in London’s O2 unless he agrees to perform at a Los Angeles venue, Staples Center. This was triggered when Osbourne’s management had tried to book London’s sole arena with a capacity for large concerts, the O2 for Osbourne’s upcoming farewell tour, No More Tours 2.
Sharon Osbourne, Ozzy’s manager, had threatened to sue AEG over this policy and what she considers to be a blackmail, has followed through on her threat. The lawsuit against AEG is seeking to end the block-booking practice in live entertainment. The lawsuit alleges AEG of, “blatant, anticompetitive conduct — specifically, tying — by Anschutz Entertainment Group, Inc (“AEG”) and certain subsidiary and affiliated entities” and calls it a “clear monopolist for arena-sized venues in greater London”, which seeks to control artists, “through management contracts, it also controls a number of other large concert venues in greater London in addition to the O2,” as reported by Variety.
AEG and Live Nation have had a history of bitter competition, and feuded in the past over rights and competing venues. “This suit is without merit and we will vigorously fight it. We welcome a closer look at the global live entertainment market and specifically, our practices and the practices of our competition. AEG has always worked hard to put artists first. At the same time, we must respond to the actions of those we compete with, specifically Live Nation and Madison Square Garden. Fighting for a level playing field is fair competition at its core,” said Jay Marciano, AEG’s chairman and CEO, as reported by Pitchfork.
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