Bobby Brown sues Showtime and the BBC for a Whitney Houston documentary


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By Variety

LOS ANGELES – Bobby Brown and Bobbi Kristina Brown's lawyers sued the New York court for the documentary "Whitney: I Can Be Me", alleging that Showtime, the BBC and several other defendants had violated their rights abusing images from the production of the 2005 reality series "Being Bobby Brown".

Brown's suit, filed in the Southern District of the US District Court in New York, charges $ 2 million to defendants Passion Pictures, Tracey Baker-Simmons, Wanda Shelley, B2 Entertainment and Simmons Shelley Entertainment, as well at Showtime and the BBC.

The lawsuit claims that Brown and his late daughter appear in the documentary for more than 30 minutes while they never signed a release for the film. The contracts or releases they actually signed for the filming of Bravo's "Being Bobby Brown" single season in 2005 have not been postponed for any other use, says the complaint.

"The images were recorded before the divorce in 2007 between Brown and Houston," reads the document. "Brown has never signed or signed a release for the broadcast of the film's content Brown's images date back about fifteen (15) years … Assuming that the applicants have a proper title deed , they do not have the title proper to its content. "

The film's co-directors, Nick Broomfield and Rudi Dolezal, are not named as defendants, although the lawsuit includes a letter from Broomfield in 2016 to Browns' representatives attempting to get a new interview for the documentary. "I am particularly eager to make a positive statement that explains Whitney's life in a loving and enlightening way," wrote Broomfield. "We have great respect for Bobby Brown, his work as an artist and his accomplishments, we are convinced that he has been judged very hard and would like to see an opportunity to tell his story of the we can assure you that we do not have an agenda and we come from good faith. "

"Whitney: Can I Be Me" was premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in April 2017 – the lawsuit suggests an attempt at positive publicity for the film before Brown's representatives can oppose it – and its first broadcast on Showtime in August of the same year. The doc has an 86 percent approval rate on rotten tomatoes. Owen Gleiberman of Variety has described it as "Nick Broomfield's rare film in which the filmmaker is not in the center …" Whitney: Can I Be Me? N? T have a plot to He just has a story to tell, and that's what makes it incredibly compelling … It makes you want to go straight to the screen and tell Whitney Houston to to withdraw from the abyss, to find what she has given to so many others: the greatest love of all. "

The lawsuit also attaches a 2015 letter from producer Baker-Simmons to Brown's representatives, referring to "the co-production agreement that sets the talent fees for Bobby for the" Being Bobby Brown "series, which in turn deduced that Brown had waived his rights. the pictures under a contract at that time.

According to the complaint, "as B2 (the company that contributed to the creation of the Bravo series) had been dissolved before 2009, SSE, Shelley or Simmons did not have any rights in the sequence" Being Bobby Brown "and did not hold any rights in license or assignment of the footage to the other accused. "

Showtime was not immediately available to comment on Brown's costume.


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