Mark Burnett Denies Threatening 'Apprentice' Insiders Who Wanted to Leak Secret Trump Footage
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After clip emerged showing that Donald Trump once fired an 'Apprentice' contestant over 'locker room' talk, Burnett says that he has no right to release footage from the NBC reality series.

AceShowbiz - %cDonald Trump% claimed his lewd conversation with %cBilly Bush% in 2005 was "locker room banter," but he also had a problem with "The Apprentice" contestant's "locker room" chat in the past. On Monday, October 10, "The Daily Show" posted on its Twitter unaired footage from the show's season 3, revealing that Trump fired professional wrestler %cMaria Kanellis% for treating his boardroom like a locker room.

In the clip, Kanellis, a WWE star, complained about fellow contestant %cCurtis Stone% who used the bathroom in the girls' dressing room. "The reason why I said you were so arrogant is because you came into our dressing room, and you took a crap, and left the stench in the room," she said of Stone.

After Stone called the remark "below the belt," Trump sided with the Australian chef and asked Kanellis if she regretted her statement. "I just said that I thought it was a little arrogant to come into our room and do that," she defended herself.

Trump replied, "It's a little gross, right?" He added, "Isn't it sort of gross to bringing that up? It's like disgusting. This is my boardroom. It's not a locker room. Maria, you're fired."

Over the weekend, Bill Pruitt who produced the first two seasons of "The Apprentice" said that there were tapes of the Republican nominee making "far worse" comments than what he said in the conversation with Billy Bush. TV producer Chris Nee also claimed in a now-deleted tweet that Trump may have used the "N-word" on the tapes.

Buzzfeed later reported that "Apprentice" producer Mark Burnett threatened to sue any employee who leaked footage to the media in violation of their nondisclosure agreements, calling him a Trump supporter.

Hillary Clinton backers have offered money to cover the legal fees of anybody who would leak the footage. David Brock, who runs one of Clinton's Super Pacs, tweeted, "If a $5 million 'leak fee' is what stands between truth and total Trump implosion, sign me up."

However, Burnett denied the allegations made by Buzzfeed. He and MGM said in a joint statement, "MGM owns Mark Burnett's production company and 'The Apprentice' is one of its properties. Despite reports to the contrary, Mark Burnett does not have the ability nor the right to release footage or other material from 'The Apprentice'."

"Various contractual and legal requirements also restrict MGM's ability to release such material," it added. "The recent claims that Mark Burnett has threatened anyone with litigation if they were to leak such material are completely and unequivocally false. To be clear, as previously reported in the press, which Mark Burnett has confirmed, he has consistently supported Democratic campaigns."

Meanwhile, The Huffington Post claimed to have obtained a transcript from an unaired clip in which Trump mocked a female contestant, %cEmily West%'s, physical appearance. "I assume you're gonna leave this off, don't put this s**t on the show, you know. But her skin, her skin sucks, okay?" he allegedly said. "I mean her skin, she needs some serious f***in' dermatology."

%cCyndi Lauper%, who headed the team that managed West, confirmed that the transcript accurately captured the unaired portion of the episode. "Yes, of course [he said that,]" she said of Trump, adding that he didn't have standing to criticize. "Of all people to talk about people's skin!" she said.

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