Friday, January 21, 2022

‘Color Purple’ Actress Ordered to Pay Over $400K After Anti-Gay Twitter Controversy

*When actress Seyi Omooba was fired from a U.K. revival of “The Color Purple” over past homophobic comments, she later unsuccessfully sued the theater and her former agents. Now she has been ordered to pay more than $412,000 in court costs.

According to Broadway World, U.K.’s Employment Tribune has ordered Omooba to repay court costs related to her legal battle against Curve Leicester theater and Global Artists, the agency that represented her.

Here’s more from the outlet:

In 2019, Omooba was removed from Leicester Curve and Birmingham Hippodrome’s revival of musical The Color Purple after West End Hamilton actor Aaron Lee Lambert shared a screenshot of her 2014 Facebook post. The post went viral, resulting in a social media outcry with many calling the actress homophobic.

In the post, Omooba said she did not believe people could be “born gay”, and described homosexuality as a sin – “legal” but not “right”. Lambert had questioned how she could star as Celie in this important LBGTQ+ work while holding such views. Omooba was removed from the production.

READ MONTH: ‘Black Is King’ Co-director Blitz Bazawule to Direct ‘The Color Purple’ Feature Musical

Omooba sued the theater for religious discrimination, claiming she didn’t know her character was a lesbian. She also sued her former agents for breach of contract, loss of earnings, future losses, injury to feelings, and reputational damage, per MSN.

Last month an employment tribunal rejected her suit, siding with the theater by concluding that she was fired to save the production.

“We have always felt the case lacked any merit from the outset, but Seyi Omooba and her legal team continued to disregard and chose to take our theater to court regardless of the facts,” the theater said in a statement posted on Twitter.

“Unfortunately, Curve, Global Artists, and the tribunal process have been used as part of a wider campaign orchestrated by Christian Concern which has resulted in significant human and financial cost and we have had to suffer inaccurate and false reporting on this case by Seyi Omooba’s own representatives,” the statement adds.

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is an entertainment reporter with over 15 years of experience working in the film industry in areas including production and post-production, marketing, distribution, and acquisitions. She has worked for legendary film producer Roger Corman, Quentin Tarantino's production team at Miramax, the late Larry Flynt, MTV/ VH1, Hallmark Channel, Paramount, Jim Henson Co., Parade Magazine, and various LA-based companies representing above-the-line talent.



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