US comic sues Ant & Dec

Namesake fears his career will suffer

Ant and Dec are to fight a £16million lawsuit by the American comic also called Ant.

The stand-up, who hosts the US version of Celebrity Fit Club and was a judge on reality show Last Comic Standing, launched the legal action because he claims confusion over the names could damage his career.

The American Ant – full name Anthony Kalloniatis – claims that his ‘valuable reputation’ will be tarnished by the phone-voting scandals linked to Ant and Dec’s TV shows.

He launched his legal action after the British duo travelled to the States this summer to host the ABC Wanna Bet? – a version of the old ITV favourite You Bet!

A source told The Sun: ‘Under American rules no two performers can have the same name. If Ant and Dec applied for a trade mark under the name Ant, and said they were involved in comedy, they wouldn’t have been allowed to appear on TV.

‘US Ant is concerned that viewers, producers and show-bookers are confusing them, and he is losing work as a result.’

He has filed papers at the District Court at Boston to stop the pair working and award him compensation of $30million. Ant and Dec have 20 days to reply.

Here is 41-year-old Ant in action:

Published: 30 Sep 2008

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