"I need to be a father. I need to take my kids off the show," Gosselin tells Larry King

By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated October 01, 2009 09:40 PM
Ben King/Startraks

A new bombshell in the War of the Gosselins was dropped Thursday night as the battle stage shifted to the West Coast studio of CNN interviewer Larry King.

Five minutes into the appearance of Jon and his attorney Mark Heller, the lawyer told King that TLC terminated Jon’s Jon & Kate Plus 8 contract on Tuesday because Jon was planning to go on the show and announce he was ending the program by no longer appearing on it and by refusing to allow his children to participate.

Though Gosselin told King that his intention was to “pull the plug” on the show weeks before TLC fired him, King later read a statement from the network claiming that it had received no such word from Jon.

“I’ve been talking about pulling the plug on this program ever since I became involved,” said attorney Heller, who was recently hired by Jon. Heller said he considered the termination of the Gosselin reality show “a done deal.”

Jon said it was time he took control of his marriage and make life normal for his children. King challenged Heller’s claim about Jon’s plan to announce he was shutting down Jon & Kate Plus 8 on the air, because only moments before Jon said he had “no idea” he was being fired, and that he “found out just like everybody else saw it on a laptop as an [Associated Press] newswire.”

Here to Apologize

Saying he last spoke to Kate 3½ weeks ago,” and that she wants to keep the show going “for financial reasons,” Jon said, “I need to be a father. I need to take my kids off the show.” He also said he was putting the brakes on his divorce.

“I’m here to apologize to Kate,” Jon told King. “I’ve made mistakes.” He would not comment on reported flings, other than to repeat, “I’ve made mistakes.” Asked if called Kate, Jon said, “I’ve tried. She doesn’t want to talk to me.”

Kate’s attorney, Mark Momjian, said that the divorce case would not be delayed. “It’s going to go forward.”

Bitter Week

Jon and Heller’s appearance with King followed a day of numerous accusations between Jon, Kate and TLC – which, in turn, followed days of upheavals surrounding their personal and professional lives.

On Tuesday TLC announced it was dropping Jon from the show (which was to be renamed, simply Kate Plus 8), prompting him to say he wanted a permanent halt to the show because it was damaging his children.

Earlier Thursday, Heller issued a statement to say, “I am totally confident that he will be completely successful in his quest to take back control of his family and preserve, protect and ensure their future well-being by putting the brakes on his divorce and pulling the plug on TLC.”

Concerns for Kids

Rebutting Jon’s claim about their kids, Kate in her statement said: “Jon has never expressed any concerns to me about our children being involved in the show and, in fact, is on the record as saying he believes the show benefits our children and was taping on Friday with the kids.”

For its part, TLC said, “We are aware of Jon Gosselin’s recent statements, and remain deeply disappointed at his continued erratic behavior. He and the family were shooting as recently as last Friday, without incident, and his latest comments are grossly inaccurate, without merit and are clearly opportunistic.””

A peaceful resolution does not appear to be in sight, at least not this week. Only minutes before Jon’s Larry King interview, RadarOnline.com reported that TLC would be taking legal action against Jon for being in violation of his contract by appearing on another network.

Asked by King how much he made from the series last year, Jon replied $1 million before taxes, $500,000 after.