If you charge festivalgoers $12,000+ per ticket and don’t deliver a festivak, chances are you’ll be slapped with a giant one-percent lawsuit. That’s exactly what’s happened to the failed Fyre Festival: Founders Ja Rule and Billy McFarland are now being sued for $100 million as part of a suit filed on Sunday in California by celebrity lawyer Mark Geragos. According to Variety, the lawsuit will be class-action, and could accumulate more than 150 plaintiffs.
The initial suit has been filed by plaintiff Daniel Jung, who seeks “$5 million in damages for alleged fraud, breach of contract, breach of covenant of good faith, and negligent misrepresentation.”
The suit also claims that the “festival’s lack of adequate food, water, shelter, and medical care created a dangerous and panicked situation among attendees,” who became “stranded on a remote Bahamian island without basic provisions.” The suit went on to say that Fyre “was closer to The Hunger Games or Lord of the Flies than Coachella.”
Billed as a luxury two-weekend festival (tickets cost between $1,000 and $250,000) featuring acts from Blink-182 (who canceled their headlining gig days before the show) to Migos, Fyre was scheduled to take place in the Bahamas this past weekend but quickly fell apart. Appalled attendees, many of whom probably lost their luggage, shared now-viral photos of “geodesic domes” (actually disaster-relief tents), “gourmet” Styrofoam containers containing cheese sandwiches and sad-looking salads, and stranded airplanes full of irate ticket-holders. The festival was ultimately canceled, and McFarland admitted to Rolling Stone that “we were a little naive.”
McFarland added that he is planning some “make-up” dates for a 2018 edition of the festival. “The one change we will make,” he said, “is we will not try to do it ourselves. We will make sure there is infrastructure in place to support us.”
As for Ja Rule, at first he wanted people to know that the Fyre fiasco was “NOT A SCAM” and “NOT MY FAULT.” Then on Sunday, he posted to Twitter: “Relieved to share that all guest are safe, and have been sent the form to apply for a refund.” The Fyre Festival Twitter, meanwhile, said: “We’re heartbroken that we let down all the guests who put their faith in us. To our guests and staff—thank you again for your all patience as we navigate our next steps. We owe you an apology.”
Correction: Ja Rule said that the Fyre Festival was “not a scam” and that its problems were
“not my fault.” An earlier version of this article incorrectly attributed those comments to
Fyre co-founder Billy McFarland.