Cher Suing Sonny Bono’s Widow For $1 Million In Dispute Over ‘I Got You Babe’ Royalties

Cher is suing Mary Bono, the widow of her ex-husband Sonny Bono, for $1 million over the rights to some of the singing pair's most iconic songs.

Cher; Mary Bono
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Image Credit: Richard Young/Shutterstock

Cher, 75, has filed a lawsuit against her late ex-husband Sonny Bono‘s widow, Mary Bono, and accused her of withholding royalties of Sonny and Cher’s music. The “Believe” singer is seeking $1 million from Mary, 59, and filed the legal paperwork in Los Angeles federal court on Wednesday, October 13, according to court documents obtained by HollywoodLife. In the docs, Cher claimed that Mary has kept the pop superstar from receiving her share of royalties from the iconic hits she once performed with Sonny, such as “I Got You Babe” and “The Beat Goes On.”

Cher (Photo: Richard Young/Shutterstock)

Cher’s argument is that, as her 1975 divorce agreement with Sonny allegedly states, she should be receiving 50% of royalties of the former singing pair’s content. But instead, Mary “has undone” Cher’s ownership of the rights and royalties, the singer alleged in the lawsuit. Cher also claimed that Mary allegedly attempted to use “a wholly inapplicable statutory termination provision of the Copyright Act of 1976” in order to block her from receiving the royalties. Mary has yet to respond to the legal filing.

Sonny Bono and wife Mary Whitaker
Sonny Bono and wife Mary Whitaker at 1994 Carousel of Hope Ball (Photo: Bei/Shutterstock)

As fans know, Cher and Sonny made up one of the most iconic music duos of all time. They were married from 1969 to 1975, and had one child together, Chaz Bono, 52, who transitioned from female to male in 2009. After the pair parted ways, Cher continued to dominate in the film and music industry, while Sonny explored a career in politics. First, he became the mayor of Palm Springs, California, and then was elected a Republican congressman of California’s 44th district.

As for Mary, she came into Sonny’s life during his political endeavors. They got married in March 1986, and had two children together: daughter Chianna Maria Bono, 30, and son Chesare Elan Bono, 33. Sonny sadly died at the age of 62 on January 5, 1998 in a skiing accident. Mary took over her husband’s political position in the House of Representatives after the tragedy.

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