Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Pebbles $40 Million Lawsuit Over ‘TLC’ Biopic Moves Forward

Friends 4 Life minus the girl on the lower far right
Friends 4 Life minus the girl on the lower far right

*An Atlanta federal judge has ruled that TLC’s creator and former manager Perri “Pebbles” Reid can proceed with her $40 million defamation lawsuit against Viacom for how she was portrayed in the 2013 VH1 biopic, “CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story.”

Viacom filed a motion last year stating Reid had no case, but the judge recently ruled against it.

Reid signed the group in 1991, and TLC went on to become one of the biggest-selling female acts, selling over 71 million records worldwide.  The group scored ten top-ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100, including four number-one singles “Creep,” “Waterfalls,” “No Scrubs,” and “Unpretty.” They also recorded four multi platinum albums, including “CrazySexyCool.”

TLC later filed for bankruptcy, and the biopic claims Reid underpaid them and tried to control all aspects of their finances, including only paying the group $25 a week, Page Six reports.

READ RELATED STORY: Pebbles Files $40M Lawsuit Against Viacom over TLC Biopic

In response to the latest ruling, Pebbles lawyer Stacey Godfrey Evans said: “We are thrilled with this major win against Viacom and look forward to justice . . . Ms. Reid worked hard to ensure the success of TLC, and she is ready to present that story to a jury. The negative portrayal of her in the TLC movie is simply not the truth.”

pebbles t-boz & chilli

According to thejasminebrand.com, the order states:

Defendants assert there is but one interpretation of these scenes and it is not defamatory. However, viewed as a whole and in a light most favorable to Plaintiffs claims in this case, the scenes depicting the TLC members signing their contracts and then being unable to get copies of the contracts from Plaintiff are reasonably capable of multiple interpretations, including one that is defamatory to Plaintiff The scenes plausibly imply that Plaintiff pressured the TLC members into signing the Contracts without reviewing them or having them reviewed by counsel, and refused to give them copies upon their request. Accordingly, whether these scenes reasonably impart the meaning Plaintiff maintains they do is a matter for a jury to decide.

A spokesperson for Viacom told Page Six: “ ‘CrazySexyCool’ was a docudrama about the experiences of the members of TLC told from their perspective. We are confident that our First Amendment rights to tell this story will ultimately be vindicated, although we are disappointed that the court chose not to dismiss the entire case on summary judgment.”


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