Attorney Thomas J. Henry said he wants to ensure everyone to blame for the tragic crowd surge is “held responsible for their actions.”
$2 Billion Lawsuit Filed Over Astroworld
Personal injury attorney Thomas J. Henry announced Thursday that he filed a $2 billion lawsuit against Travis Scott and other organizers of his Astroworld Festival on behalf of 281 victims.
Ten people were killed and hundreds were injured during a crowd surge at the musical even in Huston, Texas, earlier this month. Those who died were between 9- and 27-years old.
Henry claims that another 120 victims have contacted his firm for potential representation.
His lawsuit lists Scott, Apple Music, Drake, Live Nation, NRG Stadium, and more as defendants.
“The defendants stood to make an exorbitant amount of money off of this event, and they still chose to cut corners, cut costs, and put attendees at risk,” Henry said in a statement. “My clients want to ensure the defendants are held responsible for their actions, and they want to send the message to all performers, event organizers, and promoters that what happened at Astroworld cannot happen again.”
According to Rolling Stone, the lawsuit specifically claims that Apple Music’s endeavor to live stream the event directly caused harm to attendees because the concert’s layout was organized in a way “that best served Apple’s online streaming of the concert at the detriment to concertgoer safety.”
“Apple Music had cameras, camera stands, cameramen, and metal barriers surrounding each; these cameras effectively split the premises both horizontally and vertically by the metal barricades,” the suit continues, per the outlet. “The placement of cameras streaming for Apple Music’s broadcast effectively limited many concertgoers’ means of exit; this dangerous condition would inevitably prevent individuals from dispersing.”
Other Lawsuits Filed Over Astroworld Tragedy
Henry’s lawsuit is one of dozens filed against Scott and others alleging that extreme negligence led to the Astroworld tragedy. Famed civil rights attorney Ben Crump is representing 200 Astroworld survivors and families in 93 lawsuits, including the family of 9-year-old Ezra Blount, who died from the injuries he sustained at the event. Crump called the loss “incomprehensible” and said he is “committed to seeking answers and justice.”
“If Travis Scott is accountable, he absolutely should be held accountable,” he told reporters in a separate statement.
Attorney Tony Buzbee also announced this week that he filed a $750 million suit on behalf of 125 Astroworld attendees. Among those are the family of Axel Acosta, who died at the concert, as well as others who are suffering from physical and psychological injuries.
“We have taken statements from more than fifty witnesses,” Buzbee wrote on Instagram. “We have collected hours of video tape from almost every angle. No amount of money will fix what occurred on the night of November 5. However, based on what I know now, to include what I learned during discussions with opposing counsel, it is my firm belief that every individual who attended that concert and who suffered injury will be fairly compensated. I intend to make sure of it.”
He said he expects to file lawsuits on behalf of another 100 people.
In the days after the concert, Scott said he was “honestly just devastated” over the massive crowd surge.
“I could never imagine anything like this just happening,” he added.
See what others are saying: (Rolling Stone) (Complex) (A.V. Club)
Ethan Klein Slams Defamation Lawsuit Filed by Ryan Kavanaugh: “He Wields the Legal System Like a Malignant Tyrant”
In response to the defamation claims, the podcast host argued that his criticisms of Kavanaugh are based on published news articles from reputable media outlets.
Ryan Kavanaugh Files Lawsuit Against Ethan Klein
YouTuber and “H3 Podcast” host Ethan Klein issued a statement to Rogue Rocket on Tuesday condemning a lawsuit filed against him by media mogul Ryan Kavanaugh.
Kavanaugh, a movie producer and co-founder of the social media app Triller, wrote an essay earlier that same day announcing the lawsuit. The tension between the two parties, however, stems back to when Triller sued Klein for allegedly pirating and broadcasting one of its marquee fights between Jake Paul and Ben Askren in April.
Klein has argued that the short clip he played from the program falls under fair use. Meanwhile, Kavanaugh claims that amid this Triller legal battle, Klein has “posted more than eight podcasts disparaging” him with defamatory remarks. This prompted him to file the separate suit against Klein personally Tuesday.
“He has posted video after video attacking and slandering me personally, despite the fact that, while I am a shareholder and co-founder, I am not Triller,” Kavanaugh wrote.
Among other claims, Kavanaugh alleged that Klein has falsely accused him of not paying his nanny and receiving two DUIs. Kavanaugh also accused Klein of repeatedly taking a Variety article that accused him of running a Ponzi scheme out of context and not clarifying that the accusation at hand had been revoked.
Kavanaugh additionally alleged that Klein encouraged his followers to carry out online attacks against him. He claimed his reputation was further harmed when Klein allegedly had bots edit Kavanaugh’s Wikipedia page with negative information and give poor reviews of the Triller app.
“All of this amounts to textbook malicious behavior, intended to harm me and Triller,” Kavanaugh wrote. “This leaves me with no choice but to sue. One malignant internet personality with a large following—the equivalent of an angry child with a loaded gun—can cause disproportionate harm to anyone, using lies, slander, and SEO, and suffer few if any consequences.”
According to a screenshot of the lawsuit Kavanaugh posted to Instagram, he is accusing Klein of defamation and defamation by implication.
Ethan Klein Denies Accusations
In his statement to Rogue Rocket, Klein denied the accusations.
“Ryan Kavanaugh’s first malicious lie is that he claims I pirated his event,” Klein wrote. “Fair use is at the heart of this lawsuit, same as with our first lawsuit. We used a short clip of the event during an extremely critical commentary during a 3 hour podcast. Ryan Kavanaugh tries to blame me for his event being widely pirated which is pure defamation. We didn’t even react to the event until days after it was streamed on PPV. If he cared about pirates why did he drop all of his other lawsuits against actual pirates but only kept the one against me?”
Klein added that he has not told his fans to harass Kavanaugh and has actually discouraged them from doing so on multiple occasions. Klein also said he did not make up allegations that Kavanaugh received a DUI or did not pay his nanny, citing links to articles by The New York Times, Vanity Fair, and Fox San Diego that previously reported on these cases.
“I am not creating any of these claims, but merely reading what has already been published by well respected news sources. How is that defamation?” he said.
Klein went on to argue that he repeatedly made it clear on his “H3 Podcast” that the allegations mentioned in the Variety article were eventually revoked. Klein then wrote that if Kavanaugh “has a problem with the article,” he should “take it up with Variety, one of the most trusted news sources in entertainment, not me.”
The YouTuber noted that he has only encouraged his followers to provide honest reviews for the Triller app and believes that Kavanaugh is unjustifiably placing full blame for poor reviews on him when there are other factors to consider.
“He claims I am solely responsible for every 1 star review Triller has received, despite one of Triller’s stars and equity holders Noah Beck making a TikTok complaining about the app being flipped,” Klein claimed.
“Ryan Kavanaugh is a business elite who is used to suing, harassing and breaking the law with no consequences,” Klein continued. “He wields the legal system like a malignant tyrant, uses it to silence his critics, and now to stifle fair use, something we all on youtube should care about.”
In a Twitter thread, he further accused Kavanaugh of trying to get him banned from YouTube and said Kavanaugh has allegedly sent him a “threatening” message on Instagram.
For his part, Kavanaugh spent much of Tuesday promoting his lawsuit on social media.
“For people who just blindly believe what Ethan is preaching he is lying and by doing his bidding you are helping him harm a lot of people while putting millions in his pocket,” he alleged in one Instagram post.
See what others are saying: (The Hollywood Reporter) (Insider)
Gucci Family Slams “House of Gucci” as “Far From Accurate”
The heirs to the designer legacy said they were not consulted during the production of the Ridley Scott picture.
Gucci Family Addresses “House of Gucci”
Members of the Gucci family released a statement Monday condemning their “far from accurate” portrayal in Ridley Scott’s latest film “House of Gucci.”
The film stars Lady Gaga as Patrizia Reggiani, who was convicted for hiring a hitman to carry out the murder of her ex-husband Maurizio Gucci, played by Adam Driver. Other members of the designer dynasty are played by Academy Award-winning actors Al Pacino, Jeremy Irons, and Jared Leto.
“House of Gucci” has received mixed reviews from critics, but the Gucci family has made it clear they are not fans of the picture. They first released their scathing statement to Italian news agency ANSA. Variety published a full English translation of the release.
“The production of the film did not bother to consult the heirs before describing Aldo Gucci – president of the company for 30 years – and the members of the Gucci family as thugs, ignorant and insensitive to the world around them, attributing to the protagonists, events, a tone and an attitude that never belonged to them,” the statement said. “This is extremely painful from a human point of view and an insult to the legacy on which the brand is built today.”
The Gucci heirs specifically slammed the depiction of Reggiani. The family argued that the film crossed a line by “suggesting an indulgent tone towards a woman who [was] definitively convicted of having been the instigator of the murder of Maurizio Gucci.”
“[She] is painted not only in the film, but also in the statements made by cast members, as a victim who was trying to survive in a masculine and macho corporate culture,” the statement continues. “This couldn’t be further from the truth.”
It closes by saying the Gucci family “does not deserve to be disturbed to stage a film that is not true and that does not do justice to its protagonists.”
“The members of the Gucci family reserves every right to protect the name, image and the dignity of their loved ones.”
Other Inside Criticisms of The Film
This is not the first time the family has criticized “House of Gucci.” Back in April, Patrizia Gucci, one of Mauricio’s second cousins, told the Associated Press that the production was “stealing the identity of a family to make a profit.”
Scott dismissed the criticisms in an interview with BBC.
“I don’t engage with that,” he told the outlet. “You have to remember that one Gucci was murdered and another went to jail for tax evasion so you can’t be talking to me about making a profit. As soon as you do that you become part of the public domain.”
Designer Tom Ford, who is briefly played by Reeve Carney in the film, also slammed “House of Gucci” in an essay for Air Mail. He compared some scenes to a “Saturday Night Live” parody and said he felt as though he “had lived through a hurricane” when the film ended. Ford’s largest issue, though, was how the film treated a real-life death.
“It was hard for me to see the humor and camp in something that was so bloody,” he wrote. “In real life, none of it was camp. It was at times absurd, but ultimately it was tragic.”
See what others are saying: (Variety) (BBC News) (New York Times)
Recording Academy CEO Defends Nominations After Controversial Nods to Marilyn Manson and Louis C.K.
CEO Harvey Mason Jr. said the Academy is not “in the business of restricting people” from getting nominated.
Recording Academy CEO Defends Nominations
Recording Academy CEO Harvey Mason Jr. defended Tuesday’s Grammy nominations after artists like Marilyn Manson and Louis C.K. received nods for their work.
Manson was nominated for his appearance on Kanye West’s album “Donda,” which landed in the Album of The Year category. Earlier this year, Manson was accused of sexual assault, rape, and psychological abuse by multiple victims.
C.K., who previously admitted to sexual misconduct, was nominated for Best Comedy Album.
While speaking to The Wrap, Mason argued that the Recording Academy should not consider an artist’s personal life in its nomination process.
“We won’t restrict the people who can submit their material for consideration,” he told the outlet when specifically asked about Manson’s nomination. “We won’t look back at people’s history, we won’t look at their criminal record, we won’t look at anything other than the legality within our rules of, is this recording for this work eligible based on date and other criteria. If it is, they can submit for consideration.”
Even though Mason believes artists with serious accusations levied against them should not be excluded from nominations, he did say the Academy will consider those factors when it comes to performances and other on-camera appearances.
“What we will control is our stages, our shows, our events, our red carpets,” he explained. “We’ll take a look at anyone who is asking to be a part of that, asking to be in attendance, and we’ll make our decisions at that point. But we’re not going to be in the business of restricting people from submitting their work for our voters to decide on.”
Other Controversial Nods
Manson and C.K. were not the only controversial figures who received nominations. Comedian Dave Chappelle was nominated in Best Spoken Word Album for his special “8:46.” Last month, he faced severe backlash for transphobic comments he made in a separate special titled “The Closer.” Chappelle was slammed by several major LGBTQ+ organizations over the special but has defended himself against criticisms.
Rapper DaBaby was also condemned by LGBTQ+ groups this summer after he made homophobic remarks during her performance at the Rolling Loud festival in Miami. He received Grammy recognition for his work on “Donda” and Justin Bieber’s “Justice.”
The Grammy Awards will be held in Los Angeles on Jan. 31, 2022.