Saturday, May 21, 2022

‘Jimmy Kimmel Live!’ Production Company Allowed Drug Use On Set, Lawsuit Claims

“Jimmy Kimmel Live!” host Jimmy Kimmel and Tiffany Haddish (Randy Holmes via Getty Images))

*The production company for Jimmy Kimmel Live! has been sued by a former employee who claims he was wrongfully terminated, and that the company violated labor codes. 

According to new legal documents, obtained by The Blast, ex-employee Brian Ballard, who worked as a set decorator and a stagehand for the production company 12:05 AM Productions, is reportedly suing the company after he claims he was wrongfully terminated for reporting another employee’s drug on the set.

Ballard claims the first supervisor he reported the incident to told him it wasn’t their responsibility to check employees about drug usage. When Ballard reported the incident to a different supervisor, he was told to “handle it yourself.”

The ex-employee claims the show “failed to follow the FDA guidelines regarding labeling, testing, and reporting requirements, in regards to the drug use.”

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Following the incident, Jimmy Kimmel Live! ceased taping at his studio on Hollywood Boulevard in March 2020 amid the COVID pandemic. Ballard claims that many workers were laid off but in January 2021 “most if not all of the members of the production crew were notified that they were rehired and returned to work on the show.”

Except Ballard was not rehired. 

In the lawsuit, Ballard claims that the reason he wasn’t invited back to work was “substantially done in retaliation for having complained about illegal conduct and the unsafe working conditions which resulted from working under the influence of drugs on the set.”

“The decision to terminate his employment was because he complained to agents, servants, and managers of his employer regarding unsafe working conditions,” the lawsuit alleges, as reported by Radar Online. “These unsafe working conditions were precipitated by allowing other employees to work on the set with other employees while under the influence of drugs and incapable of safely performing his job.”

Ballard’s lawsuit is claiming that he suffered “emotional distress, humiliation, mental anguish, and embarrassment” as a result of being fired.

“The decision to terminate his employment was because he complained to agents, servants, and managers of his employer regarding unsafe working conditions,” the lawsuit also alleges. “These unsafe working conditions were precipitated by allowing other employees to work on the set with other employees while under the influence of drugs and incapable of safely performing his job.”

The lawsuit does not specify how much money he is seeking for his wrongful termination.

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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