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Contestant sues reality show, claims she was shocked and humiliated

A woman who claims she was duped into believing she was a contestant on a “Making the Band”-type series is suing E! and others involved in “Reality Hell”, a show that tricks people into thinking they are participating in new reality shows.

The woman suffered “mental and emotional anguish, fright, horror, nervousness, grief, anxiety, worry, shock, humiliation, shame, embarrassment and fear” when she learned there was no “girl band” show and that the other contestants were actually actors, according to a suit filed Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court.

The woman, Malena Brush, is seeking unspecified financial damages from the network, a casting agency and others on a dozen grounds, including intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence and false imprisonment. The show has not yet aired, according to the suit.

Her lawyer wrote in the suit that Brush was “instructed ... to engage in humiliating activities” at her home during a filming session for what she was told was a “behind-the-scenes backstory.”

According to the suit, she later spent eight hours at a recording studio surrounded by people she was told were other members of the singing group and “recording studio personalities.” During this time, her attorney wrote, those employed by the show “proceeded to harass, embarrass, heckle, insult and offend” Brush.

When she learned she had been duped, she tried to leave the studio, but had no transportation home, according to the suit. “Under duress” she agreed to a videotaped interview so she could leave, the suit contends.

A spokeswoman for E! declined to comment, citing a network policy not to comment on litigation. Representatives from Sam Rhima Casting, a casting agency named in the suit, did not return messages. 

Announcing “Reality Hell” last month, a network executive told Daily Variety, "So many people are drawn to reality shows for their small taste of fame and ironically, this show gives it to those willing participants who are just very much excited to be part of the reality process. I can tell you the joy they get from when they find out they're on ['Reality Hell'] has been very fun for us."

-- Harriet Ryan 

Comments () | Archives (37)

Another Ryan Seacrest production. Does he produce anything that isn't garbage? What a joke, yeah he's the new Merv Griffin. Wish he and the Kardashian's (yes Bruce that includes you) would find a reality island somewhere and leave TV alone.

Want fame, rewards, recognition for a lifetime...go mentor an "at-risk" teen for a few months, years. I assure you that you'll be surrounded by all the reality you could ever want.

"...a network executive told Daily Variety, 'So many people are drawn to reality shows for their small taste of fame and ironically, this show gives it to those willing participants who are just very much excited to be part of the reality process. I can tell you the joy they get from when they find out they're on ['Reality Hell'] has been very fun for us.'"

Only an arrogant horse's rear-end could have said that. Believing people are just lining up to be humiliated, physically and mentally mistreated, and to be the butt of someone's sick sense of humor. I hope this woman wins her suit and is awarded damages in such a huge amount that everyone involved in degrading her will have to spend the rest of their lives trying to sell pencils to the rich and beautiful whom they wanted to become as part of the TV network's cult of personality behind the cameras.

This case was opened in AllRise court to decide who is the blame here, the fame seeking contestant or the rating seeking network. Influence the verdict http://bit.ly/B7fLx

Unless she did not read her contract, then she knew darn well what was going on. And no one can "force" you to do anything if you have values. A bogus lawsuit founded on a stupid girl looking for fame.

Anyone who is an actor/musician/singer knows what its like to go audition for any show and all the paperwork they give you should you be chosen. EVERYTHING is pretty much spelled out. You may not know what the show is but if you agree to be on it that means you agree to the format. This female is not the only one with a dream and got disappointed by the results. Instead of playing the victim she should suck it up and move forward to the next opportunity. A law suit?! HA! What a joke.

How low will these networks go in order to make a profit? Apparently, they are unable to come up with original programming, so they decide to defraud and abuse people. These media corporations are getting more and more cavalier with the actions they take towards the regular public. I am sure that this woman is subjecting herself to great risk in order to fight them on what she believes is a valid claim. She was apparently vulnerable and they sought to profit off of her vulnerability. Regrettably, the only way to fight these corporate giants is to take them to court, which unfortunately entails additional public focus on the very thing she apparently wants to suppress. We should all be proud of people like this woman, who are willing to fight corporate indecency and impudence. If people are not willing to fight for what they think is wrong, then the corporate giants of this world will violate us all because they are unrestrained.

I hope they toss her and her frivilous lawsuit out of court. Give me a break.

Here is where the problem is with this whole situation. . . 1) she CANNOT sing, 2) she embarassed herself by acting like a hillbilly and saying the "f" word numerous times and calling one of the actors a "butterface" 3) the suit is ridiculous for the fact that I guarantee anyone that she is suing because she realizes how dumb she looks and how immature, unprofessional and just trashy she looks AFTER the show was aired. SHE portrayed herself like that, not E! She said "f" you and threatened to punch another actor in the mouth. Oh and she didn't look that upset when they told her she was on "Reality Hell"

Also, E! did not have her falsely imprisoned, she was able to leave whenever she wanted. She was on the show for the pure fact that she wanted to be famous, on television and in a girl group. That's exactly what she got in one sense or another.

There are a lot more seriously injured people out there in the world and that actually have a cause of action. Then there are dumb idiots like herself who think they have been wronged when in reality they are just wanna be singers who can't sing, dance or act. They have no talent. Go out in the REAL WORLD and get a REAL JOB! Give it up.

Of course she's humiliated! From what I've seen of this show the other "victims" are usually somewhat decent if gormless, and completely bemused by the shenanigans. This one was a total bitch from start to finish, had no talent, and was obviously too stupid to listen to the rancid lyrics she was forced to sing over and over and over again.

Enough is enough there needs to be laws in place to protect unsuspecting people. Not everyone knows what really goes on. Do you know when you go on a show you end up giving up your phones and your contact the the rest of the world for weeks? No TV, radio, just lots and lots of alcholol and enduced drama created by the producers. Plotting people against people. If you dont play right they edit you what ever way they like. Thats why most people dont walk out fear of pissing off the producers and editors. Sadly most people think they will never get edited in a bad light however they do. REality producers seek people who are emotional disturbed on purpose to exploit them. Again laws need to be in place to protect people. Look it up there has been several suicides after a particepent has been on a show. Googgle reality star suicides. Not a coincedence, these producers prey on the mental ill and exploit them!

Good for her to sue the devil out of them. I have been completely turned off by television for the past 10 years due to the fact that networks have been unregulated and allowed to start using "fraud" as an acceptable method of boosting ratings. Reality shows are nothing of the kind and should be considered a fraudulent product being sold to the public. Its high time the consumer starts biting back as often as possible.

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