2012 American Idol winner Phillip Phillips wants to be released from his contract with 19 Entertainment. Last week, the singer filed a petition with the California Labor Commissioner. Phillips claims that the American Idol producer, 19 Entertainment, and its affiliated companies have manipulated him into accepting jobs. Phillips claims he has been forced into performing at unpaid gigs for American Idol’s sponsors. The singer also claims he doesn’t have creative control over his music career, and that he wasn’t even allowed to choose the title of his album. The singer mentioned that he found out the name of his album, once it was released to the public. Phillips wants to void all of his agreements with 19 Entertainment citing his agreements with the company are “oppressive and fatally conflicted.”
Phillips signed a series of agreements including a recording, publishing, merchandising, and management contract. The contracts are all tied-in with 19 Entertainment, a company owned by Simon Fuller. According to Phillips, Fuller’s company receives a forty percent commission on all of his business dealings. Phillips released a statement saying he was grateful for the opportunities American Idol has provided him. He also stated how much he valued his fans and the show, “The value that the fans and the show have given to my career is not lost on me. However, I have not felt that I have been free to conduct my career in a way that I am comfortable with.” He added, “I look forward to being able to make my own choices about my career and to being able to make great music and play it for my fans.”
Fuller’s 19 Entertainment released a statement saying they were proud of everything they have accomplished with Phillips, adding that they worked closely to help build his music career. “We have always acted in the best interest of Phillip. We will vigorously defend ourselves from any baseless claims to the contrary and from any attempt to interfere with our rights and relationships.” During his relationship with 19 Entertainment, Phillip Phillips has performed and made a number of appearances on the Today Show, The View, the Late Show With David Letterman, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and he performed the Star Spangled Banner at a World Series game.