Tito Sotto, Vic Sotto, and Joey De Leon filed a copyright infringement and unfair competition complaint against Eat Bulaga! producer TAPE Inc. and GMA Network.
According to The Philippine STAR, TVJ filed the complaint on June 30 following TAPE and GMA’s decision to air and replay some of the noontime show’s episodes without their consent.
The defendants received the summons from Marikina Court on July 12, saying that they are given 30 days to submit their reply.
If they fail to answer within the time period, the court would “render judgment as may be warranted by the allegations in the complaint, as well as the affidavits and other evidence on record.”
The STAR reported later in the day that GMA Network has issued a statement on the matter. "We will refer the complaint to our legal counsel, Belo Gozon, Elma Parel Asuncion, and Lucila Law Offices," it said.
TVJ has an ongoing rift with TAPE Inc. They announced they have parted ways with the EB producers last May 31 after rumors about an Eat Bulaga! rebranding—and the trio getting fired—broke out amid financial losses. After the announcement, staff members, including hosts, writers, sales, production, and cameramen, tendered their resignation.
TVJ and TAPE are still in the middle of a trademark and copyright tug-of-war regarding the rightful owner of the Eat Bulaga! brand.