TNT has a new series. It’s called Rich & Shameless.
TNT will release on May 22 an installment called “The Heiress and the Sex Cult,” focusing on Clare Bronfman.
Here is how TNT advertises it.
“Seagrams heiress Clare Bronfman and her involvement in a nefarious sex cult.”
The episode about Bronfman is further described: “The Heiress & the Sex Cult” gives an up-close look at Clare Bronfman, a quiet equestrian and heiress to one of the largest fortunes in the world. When Bronfman meets charismatic self-help guru Keith Raniere, she suddenly becomes the financier of one of the most abusive cults of the 21st century – and consequently, an enabler of her mentor’s twisted desires.”
The episode will run for one hour with commercials. That means 48 minutes without commercials. It is known that several people acquainted with Bronfman did interviews in connection with the documentary. Several of them are not admirers.
The Hollywood Reporter announced that Bronfman’s lawyer, Duncan Levin, “is warning creators of… Rich & Shameless to tread carefully in their portrayal of her…
“In a letter to the network, Warner Bros. Discovery and producer Tom Lindley, a lawyer for Bronfman challenged the series’ depiction that she knowingly funded DOS, a subgroup within Nxivm that trafficked and abused women.”
Levin wrote, “While we hope that this letter will be unnecessary, we are quite alarmed with the misleading and inaccurate promotional materials that have already been issued in connection with the Program and write to strongly caution you to proceed carefully so as not to further defame Ms. Bronfman.”
Bronfman hasn’t seen the episode.
Levin says the title “creates the impression that Ms. Bronfman knowingly funded or was in any way associated with a ‘sex cult.'”
Levin says his client was only involved in Nxivm, a “well-regarded organization that was and always had been separate and distinct from DOS.”
“Not only is the evidence in the court record extraordinarily clear, but the federal judge presiding over Ms. Bronfman’s case made a specific judicial finding on this point,” Levin writes.
Bronfman pleaded guilty to charges related to immigration fraud and identity theft.
“I agree with Ms. Bronfman that the available evidence does not establish that she was aware of DOS prior to June 2017 or that she directly or knowingly funded DOS or other sex trafficking activities,” wrote U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis in Bronfman’s sentencing memo.
“I do not find that Ms. Bronfman knowingly funded a sex cult.”
She did help fund NXIVM. Bronfman spent at least $116 million on Nxivm, prosecutors alleged.
The Hollywood Reporter says, “Defamation lawsuits are difficult to win. They have to prove that the people who made the allegedly defamatory statements knew they were lying and acted with a reckless disregard for the truth.”
One of their defenses may be that if they had sources who told them Bronfman funded DOS, directly or indirectly, they might get around the reckless disregard for the truth element.
Rich & Shameless debuted on April 23 with an exposé on Girls Gone Wild founder Joe Francis.
1. Girls Gone Wild Exposed
Going beyond the supposedly harmless fun of wet t-shirt competitions and booze-fueled spring breaks.
2. Pharma Bro vs. Wu-Tang Clan
Martin Shkreli’s war of words with Wu Tang Clan over his ownership of their secret album.
3. Where Did NBA Star Brian Williams Go?
The story of NBA star Brian Williams, who had it all – but threw in the towel and vanished.
4. The Mysterious Disappearance of the Bitcoin Millionaire
The mystery behind bitcoin millionaire Gerald Cotton, who died under suspicious circumstances.
5. The Heiress and the Sex Cult
A look at Clare Bronfman, an heiress who suddenly became the financier of a highly abusive cult.
6. Peter Nygard’s Unseen Tapes
The story of billionaire fashion entrepreneur Peter Nygard and his bizarre quest to stop aging.