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'American Idol'

Black Contestants' Racial Suit

We Want $25 Mil ... EACH

7/24/2013 4:28 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0724_idol_ten_launch
Ten black former "American Idol" contestants from various seasons have filed a lawsuit against the show, claiming they were unjustly booted because of their race ... and they EACH want $25 million ... minimum.

We broke the story ... the contestants have accused producers of conducting a "cruel and inhumane" scheme to exploit them for ratings by illegally digging up their arrest histories and using the records to humiliate them on national TV.

The contestants -- Corey Clark (Season 2), Jaered Andrews (Season 2), Jacob John Smalley (Season 2), Donnie Williams (Season 3), Terrell Brittenum (Season 5), Derrell Brittenum (Season 5), Thomas Daniels (Season 6), Akron Watson (Season 6), Ju'Not Joyner (Season 8), and Chris Golightly (Season 9).

The contestants' lawyer claims the show used the arrest info to make his clients appear to be "violent criminals, liars and sexual deviants" ... when they weren't. In fact, none had ever even been convicted of the charges stemming from their arrests.

Worse, the lawyer claims ONLY black people were ever probed about their alleged criminal pasts ... never white people.

Not only do the contestants feel they got the shaft, they claim their lives have been ruined by the show's racist portrayals.

The 10 are suing for discrimination and other alleged misdeeds.  They also want Idol to adopt new anti-racism regulations.

Reps for FOX and FremantleMedia had no comment.

376 COMMENTS

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46.

Ryuga the Dragon Emperor    

Obama voters.

266 days ago
47.

DGarcia13    

Wow, I can't sing let me go blame them too. They are all sore loosers, I hope they don't get anything & I hope they have to end up paying for their own attorneys to show them a lesson. Shame on all of them. If u can't sing live with it, I guess its true when they say the truth hurts. Amer Idol...don't settle with any of them

266 days ago
48.

nof    

Definition -


of Being-In-The-Right-Place-At-The-Right-Time:


Having the very delicious Paula Abdul


ALLEGEDLY bring you home -


-After a rehearsal.


Even I tried out after (allegedly) THAT.

266 days ago
49.

AMY D    

Yeah, good luck with that!!! Haahaa

266 days ago
50.

Observer999    

Oh boohoo... I'm sick of the race card being played by blacks whenever things don't work out for them. I also hope that case gets thrown out of court and that the judge awards costs to the Idol producers since it's so clearly frivolous.

266 days ago
51.

FUTMZ    

So. Want to be treated like a black king in a "white man's world"? Climb aboard Beiber's "S.S.DownLow" and cruise the harbors with your thuggy homies. If you're a male.

266 days ago
52.

licxs    

didn't that cory guy try to say he was screwing with paula and I thought he left early cause he got a deal with a another company and hello is ruben studdard and Jennifer Hudson and fantasia among others not black...these guys are talentless idiots tying to cash in on a payday

266 days ago
53.

Chris    

So American Idol found arrest records and used that information for ratings? They used truthful information that are public records? Good luck with that lawsuit!

266 days ago
54.

blackpole     

To bad they aren't that other race.then American idol would only have to fork up some Meth and a sibling to screw

266 days ago
55.

Denese    

How can they be an American Idol and have any kind of a criminal record? That's stupid. The name of the show says it all.

266 days ago
56.

dalpor    

WAAH WAAH I'm black, oh the injustice. Call the ACLU. Call Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Barry Soetoro and Eric Holder .

266 days ago
57.

Jordan    

On one hand the 10 Contestants do have a point maybe worth $25.00 because when i hire an employee it takes less than 5 minutes to find out if they had criminal past. But 25 million GOOD LUCK!!!!

266 days ago
58.

Theresa Q    

Pathetic. You lost because you suck. I guess now the hundreds of white/hispanic/others that got booted ought to sue. Hello, Fantasia & Reuban Studdard won because they had talent. All ten of you are pathetic, greedy, whiney losers.

266 days ago
59.

TexasBlonde    

I guess they cannot accept the reality they just were not good. This should be thrown out as a frivolous lawsuit.

266 days ago
60.

Proudad247    

One of the ppl are white. Wtf? Why is he white and saying he got porked bc he's black?

266 days ago
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