Late Apology for Late Show Lawsuit

Quill, by flickr user sure2talk, licensed by Creative Commons.

“My bad.”

A former intern who sued David Letterman is now apologizing for the lawsuit, saying lawyers forced her into the idea. In an apology letter sent to New York’s Daily News, Mallory Musallam expresses regret over suing The Late Show over unpaid wages. The intern, backed by similar employees dating back to 2008, had filed suit against Worldwide Pants, the force behind CBS’s popular late night television program. Musallam went as far as to claim that she had been treated like a “indentured servant” by Letterman and the staff at The Late Show. The suit was originally filed years ago in the New York Supreme Court, amongst a heard of other lawsuits involving unpaid interns.

According to Musallam, several lawyers coerced her into thinking she had a legitimate gripe against Letterman. Though only shortly employed in the fall of 2008, many lawyers contacted her around the same time as the Statute of Limitations was ending on any possible legal action. Mallory, now unemployed, claims she was contacted by phone, email, and LinkedIn by legal professionals encouraging her to take action. Reportedly, the lawyers convinced her that filing a lawsuit against The Late Show and CBS was a viable solution to her financial issue, as she was drowning in student debt. “I hope we can put this behind us”, she wrote in her apology letter. Letterman failed to comment, while CBS released a one-line self-exclamatory comment.

The “unpaid interns” horse has been beaten to death, however this brings a new question to the conversation. The aggression of lawyers contacting Musallam, allegedly thinking they could profit from a large settlement with CBS, truly begs a few questions. Either way, credit David Letterman for taking the high road (most likely at the advisement of his legal team) and letting the issue play itself out. Truthfully, I’m surprised the apology letter made such a big wave not only in the entertainment world, but also in legal news. Mallory’s words from the apology letter sum up the issue quite well: “I am ultimately responsible for my actions as an adult”.

Comments are closed.