Battle Over Thomas Kinkade's Empire Turns Ugly

Battle Over Thomas Kinkade's Empire Turns Ugly

The battle over the $70 million estate of world-famous painter, Thomas Kinkade, just turned really nasty—with his wife and his mistress fighting over the empire. 

The newly discovered handwritten will is now the center of the battle. Written in sloppy—perhaps drunken—scrawl, it reads: "I, Thomas Kinkade, being of sound mind and body do hereby bequeath to Amy Pinto Walsh $10,000,000 in cash..."

The document was dated November 18, 2011 and was presented in court by Kinkade's mistress, Amy Pinto-Walsh.

INSIDE EDITION's Diane McInerney spoke to Keith Barna, a friend of Pinto-Walsh.

"Why do you think that Amy is entitled to his fortune?" asked McInerney. 

"He wanted to take care of her, he wanted to marry her. So it doesn't surprise me that he wrote some sort of document that included her in a will," said Barna.

Kinkade, known as "The Painter of Light," was found dead two months ago in the mansion he shared with his mistress near San Jose, California, after consuming a "lethal level of alcohol" and popping valium.  

Kinkade's estranged wife Nanette was married to America's most popular artist for more than 30 years. They had four daughters. She's claiming Pinto-Walsh is a "gold digger" and is questioning the authenticity of the will.

But Barna believes that's not true. 

"It was very real. You could tell that they loved each other and wanted to be a family," said Barna.