'Laverne and Shirley' star Cindy Williams has filed a...

LOS ANGELES -- 'Laverne and Shirley' star Cindy Williams has filed a $20 million suit accusing the show's producers of trying to force her out of the long-running ABC-TV series because she is pregnant.

The suit filed Monday in Superior Court alleges that Paramount Pictures executive producer Garry Marshall, brother of co-star Penny Marshall, tried to exclude Miss Williams from the show after making oral commitments to her that she would continue to appear on the comedy program.


The suit says the problems started last May when Miss Williams told Paramount she was pregnant. In an oral agreement, the studio allegedly told Miss Williams that her pregnancy would be written into the show, and agreed to let her work through mid-October. Her baby is due in November.

Miss Williams said the studio promised that she would not be required to perform any services that would endanger her health or that of the unborn baby.

Miss Williams was to receive $75,000 for each of 22 episodes, plus $37,500 for reruns. The suit said Paramount reneged on the agreements, however, allegedly at Garry Marshall's urging.

The suit seeks $10 million in general damages, $10 million in punitive damages and a court determination of the validity of the oral agreements.


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