Come and listen to a story 'bout a man named Jethro ...
Max Baer, Jr. -- who played Jethro in "The Beverly Hillbillies" -- has a bone to pick with CBS for undermining his plan to create a restaurant empire ... all because of a rib joint in Des Moines.
According to the lawsuit -- obtained by TMZ -- Max cut a deal with CBS that allowed him to develop a chain of "Beverly Hillbillies" themed restaurants, casinos and hotels. Max claims he had the exclusive right to use the Jethro character and other themes from the show.
So imagine his dismay when he found out about Jethro's BBQ in Iowa. Max says CBS cut a secret side deal with the owners, allowing them to use the Jethro character that Max says was his and his alone.
When you look at the mission statement from Jethro's ... it's pretty clear ... they're taking a bite out of the same rib to which Max laid claim.
Then again ... the people who eat at Jethro's may simply be poor mountaineers who barely kept their family fed.
NAILED For $10 MIL
in 'NCIS' Death Lawsuit
9/30/2014 5:19 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
The family of a security guard who was killed on the set of "NCIS" won a $10.4 million judgment against CBS ... TMZ has learned.
A CBS production van that was transporting "NCIS" crew members crashed into 52-year old security guard Julio Villamariona after the driver had a medical emergency and lost control. The guard died in an ambulance en route to the hospital.
CBS admitted during the lawsuit the driver had a medical condition it should have known about, so the trial was really about the amount of damages the family would collect.
Tuesday afternoon a jury decided ... and gave Julio's widow and 3 adult children a total of $10.4 million.
The family's lawyer, Brian Panish, says, "I am so proud of the surviving family members and the jury for standing up to a powerful entity like CBS."
CBS Honcho Les Moonves
Hey Rihanna, No Hard Feelings
9/24/2014 7:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Les Moonves isn't fretting over the blow back he got by pulling the plug on a segment featuring Rihanna for the opening of Thursday night football ... because he scored where it counts.
The CBS Prez crowed over ratings for both Thursday and Sunday night football as he left Craig's restaurant in West Hollywood Tuesday.
As for Rihanna ... the most powerful man in Hollywood said she's the one who exercised power by telling the network to go f itself.
CBS pulled "Run This Town" -- the Jay Z song featuring Rihanna -- presumably because it would strike a raw nerve to see the woman who was beaten by Chris Brown in the wake of the Ray Rice video. Rihanna has never viewed herself as a "victim" and felt CBS unfairly resurrected the past.
NFL/CBS Deceived Everyone
I NEVER Signed on for Football
9/16/2014 11:08 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Rihanna is livid at the NFL and CBS ... claiming the league and the network had no right to make it look like she was part of the Ravens/Steelers Thursday night pre-game show ... and had no right to single her out when it was scrapped.
Sources connected with Rihanna tell TMZ ... the singer was pissed when someone sent her the joint NFL/CBS press release last week, with the headline, "CBS & NFL Network 'Run This Town' for Thursday Night Football Open with Music Featuring Rihanna & Narration by Don Cheadle."
In fact Rihanna never did anything special for the game ... all CBS/NFL did was license a Jay Z song that featured Rihanna.
Rihanna's rep tells TMZ, "Due to the misuse and misrepresentation of Rihanna's name and participation in connection to CBS TNF, CBS was not allowed to license and utilize the song 'Run This Town.' Roc Nation made the decision to not grant the song’s usage."
Translation: Because her name was used to promote the show, she felt she then had the right to block the production.
Rihanna also made it clear on social media Tuesday ... she is also angry that CBS yanked the production and insinuated it was because she was the victim of domestic violence.
CBS's plan was to use the Jay Z song along with a voiceover by Don Cheadle that would be customized for each match up -- but CBS said today the song will NOT be used.
We called CBS and the NFL ... so far, no comment.
Slams CBS for Pulling Her
from Ravens Game
9/16/2014 5:29 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
7:53 AM PT -- CBS released a statement saying they will NOT use Rihanna's performance going forward, saying, "Beginning this Thursday, we will be moving in a different direction with some elements of our Thursday Night Football open. We will be using our newly created Thursday Night Football theme music to open our game broadcast."
It took a few days, but Rihanna is finally lashing out about CBS' decision to yank her musical opening from "Thursday Night Football" last week and air it this week instead ... and let's just say she's not happy.
With the Ray Rice scandal still fresh, and the Ravens set to play the Steelers, CBS opted not to run a taped musical segment featuring Rihanna ... seeing as she had been the victim of high-profile domestic violence.
But with the segment now set to air this week, Rihanna took to Twitter to blast CBS, writing, "CBS you pulled my song last week, now you wanna slide it back in this Thursday? NO, F*** you! Y'all are sad for penalizing me for this."
As for what she means by "penalizing" ... it's pretty clear she feels CBS will not allow her to move on from getting beaten by Chris Brown 5 years ago.
She followed that up by writing, "The audacity ..."
Rihanna was in Barbados Monday ... looking extremely good.
Pulls the Plug on Rihanna
For Ravens/Steelers Game
9/11/2014 2:05 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
CBS has pulled the plug on the musical opening of tonight's "Thursday Night Football" -- and it's very clear it's because they don't want to feature Rihanna in the midst of the Ray Rice scandal.
The opening features Rihanna performing a version of "Run This Town" -- while Don Cheadle introduces the teams and dramatically asks who will "run this town" when the game is over.
But with the Ray Rice scandal in full swing, it's clear CBS didn't want to feature another celebrity who was involved in a high-profile domestic violence incident.
CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus says, "We thought journalistically and from a tone standpoint, we needed to have the appropriate tone coverage."
The musical opening will be replaced by a discussion of Roger Goodell's recent comments about the Ray Rice incident.
2 + LiLo = 3 Broke Girls
3/11/2014 6:15 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Lindsay Lohan is determined to tell the world -- she's still wanted.
Lindsay was out on the Sunset Strip Monday ... pretending to shield herself with a "2 Broke Girls" script.
Lindsay was leaving her favorite haunt -- the Chateau Marmont in West Hollywood.
Hey ... it's definitely a step up from "The Canyons."
NBC Threatens Celebs ...
It's Fallon or the Highway
3/6/2014 8:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
NBC is coming down like a hammer on celebs who want to get on Jimmy Fallon's show ... if they dare do a show on CBS or ABC ... they can forget about "The Tonight Show."
Sources connected to CBS, NBC and ABC tell TMZ ... the Peacock network believes Jimmy Fallon's ratings success gives them extreme bargaining power. They put the word out to celebs, agents and publicists ... if they want to be on Fallon they can't appear on ANY other network ... and not just shows that go head-to-head with Jimmy, but morning shows as well.
We're told NBC is saying the stars who go on Fallon are also allowed to appear on "Today," "Dateline" and any similar shows they air, but that's it.
A GMA source tells TMZ ... they've already gotten fallout from people they were trying to book.
Fallon is dominating late night .... crushing Jimmy Kimmel by bringing in more than twice the number of viewers.
Hot Mom ...
or HOT MESS?!
From Fox 411: "Pammy is really good about attending her boys' sporting events, but she doesn't exactly fit in with the other soccer moms."
Click through to Fox 411 to see what some Hollywood kids have to deal with on a daily basis!
I'm Reclaiming My Asian-ness!
1/31/2014 2:35 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Julie Chen is going back to her Chinese roots -- giving her maiden name top billing ... over Les Moonves no less!
When Julie married CBS honcho Leslie Moonves back in 2004, she changed her legal name to Julie Moonves. But since then she's had a string of big jobs, including host of "The Talk" and "Big Brother," as well as anchor on the "CBS Early Show" -- where she was billed as Chen.
This created problems. Julie tells TMZ, "Some places list me as one last name versus the other and when you have to show ID ... like at The White House or airport it could stall things when it was not a match... It was a hassle." Jeez ... how cool is that -- a hassle at The White House. It's like "Scandal" only real.
So Julie has filed a petition to change her name again -- this time to Julie Chen Moonves -- no hyphen. We're guessing the judge will approve the petition because everyone in L.A. wants a job with Les and we're guessing he's down with the change.
Chen out. Chen in.
I May End Up Taking a Big Pay Cut
But Hey, It's a Part-Time Job!
12/15/2013 12:35 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Katie Couric actually scored millions of dollars with her new contract ... but it could end up being a huge paycut if her talk show goes away ... TMZ has learned.
Sources connected to Katie tell TMZ, she'll be raking in $6 million a year from Yahoo in her new role as "Global Anchor." That pales in comparison to her role as anchor of the CBS Evening News, where we're told she was pulling in $15 mil a year.
At ABC, we're told Katie's company had an overall deal that grossed $20 mil a year, but not all of that went to Katie personally.
We're told she's leaving ABC news entirely, and although her talk show has not been cancelled, it would be shocking if it didn't go away at the end of the TV season.
So we gotta ask ...
'Big Brother' Star Aaryn Gries
I'm Working Out My Racist Demons
9/20/2013 2:30 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
"Big Brother" contestant Aaryn Gries is finally coming clean, admitting she talks like a racist ... but she insists it doesn't make her one.
Gries tells TMZ she's been making racial jokes for years ... but had no idea they were offensive because "no one had expressed that I was taken that way."
Gries says she wishes someone had warned her before going into the BB house ... that making these "jokes" on national TV would paint her as a big ol' racist.
"I am not a racist," she says, adding, "Sometimes you can say mindless things that will haunt you."
Guess Aaryn forgot about the gay housemate she called a "queer" ... and all the Asian people she mocked ... and the African Americans ...
'Person of Interest'
For Phony Gun Battle
9/18/2013 4:45 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
NYPD dropped the hammer on the CBS drama "Person of Interest" today -- shutting down filming of the show after locals called cops thinking a scripted gun battle was the real deal ... TMZ has learned.
According to witnesses ... some NYC residents saw people with guns near 47th Street and 5th Avenue today, and believed they were about to get caught in a shootout.
We're told officers (real ones) responded ... and discovered the action was all part of the TV crime drama -- and the firearms were just props, but producers were still guilty of a major no-no.
All gun scenes are supposed to be filmed with NYPD supervisors on the set -- and since this wasn't, cops shut down all outdoor production.
The Mayor's Office confirmed the show's permit was revoked -- which forced producers to immediately stop shooting outside for the day.
Sources connected to the production company tell us the whole mess was a "scheduling error" -- they started shooting earlier than planned ... before NYPD monitors arrived. We're told no shots were fired.
Also, the incident didn't affect indoor scenes ... which continued uninterrupted. We're told filming will resume again ASAP.
I FINALLY Got a Job!
9/7/2013 2:20 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Chad Johnson has made his triumphant return to the NFL ... to analyze fantasy football.
The ex-Ochocinco tweeted about the new gig where he will be working alongside a panel of fantasy football nerds to give his formerly expert opinion for CBS Sports starting tomorrow
The former Dolphin's receiver lost his position as a star player last year when he was arrested for head-butting his now ex-wife Evelyn Lozada.
No word on whether he slapped his lawyer's ass to celebrate the new job.