Production organisers integral in the planning of a doomed luxury festival have revealed their warnings about basic infrastructure were ignored, while others were told to perform sex acts to get water to guests.
The doomed Fyre Festival, co-organised by convicted fraudster Billy McFarland and rapper Ja Rule, was scheduled to run over two weekends at the Great Exuma Island in the Bahamas but was abruptly cancelled after guests arrived to unfinished amenities.
Guests began arriving on chartered flights from Miami in April of 2017, but disaster soon took hold with revellers — who had been promised top of the line luxury villas, events and gourmet food by celebrity supermodel endorsers like Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid — instead discovering tents, wet mattresses and prepacked sandwiches.
The ticket holders were soon being forced to flee due to a lack of habitable accommodation and drinking water.
An organiser employed by the festival in its early planning stages has claimed he told the festival's planners that their focus on "models" as opposed to basic festival infrastructure was wreaking havoc, but he was ignored.
"Instead of thinking about models, you're gonna have to think about toilets," said the employee who appears in the recently released Netflix documentary Fyre.
It was reported by Vice that Kendall Jenner was paid about $349,226 for a single Instagram post about the event.
Other models were paid in the vicinity of $28,000. Most of these models failed to identify their posts as ads, apart from Emily Ratajkowski, violating US trade commissions and making them subject of a legal case which was filed on Tuesday.
Other employees complained of a frat boy culture among senior organisers. "Billy (McFarland) would take all the boys down there, it would be boys only. They would talk about f***ing b**ches and hoes in conference meetings," an unnamed source who was employed by the festival told Vice.
Another production planner integral in the organisation of the doomed festival claimed he was told to perform sex acts on government officials so the festival could have drinking water.
One of the festival's logistical hurdles was that the island had no drinkable water, and so they acquired a large shipment of bottled Evian for attendees.
The Bahamian government put a block on this shipment, telling organisers they would release it for a fee of $260,000 ($US175,000) which McFarland just did not have (despite the budget released for Kendall Jenner and other promotional Instagram posts).
At this point McFarland called his co-organiser, production planner Andy King, and asked him to "take one big thing for the team".
"And I said, "Oh my gosh, I've been taking something for the team every day'," Mr King remembered.
"He (Billy) said, 'Well, you're our wonderful gay leader and we need you to go down, will you suck d**k to fix this water problem?' And I said, 'Billy, what?'
"And he said, 'Andy, if you will go down and suck Cunningham's d**k, who is the head of customs, and get him to clear all of the containers with water, you will save this festival'."
Mr King is a prominent and respected event organiser in New York City, with over 30 years of experience in his field.
"Can you imagine, in my 30 years of career that this was what I was going to do? I was going to do that, honestly, to save the festival," said Mr King.
He eventually got the water released on the promise the import fee would eventually be paid.
But Mr King's efforts were in vain as Fyre did not live up to its promise of lavish extravagance, failing to even meet the basic needs of guests who were left stranded on the island with little or no food, soaking wet mattresses and sweating cheese sandwiches.
McFarland was sued and convicted of defrauding his investors out of $52.3 million. A number of class actions are also underway, including one seeking $149 million (US$100 million) in damages.
The Netflix documentary Fyre was produced by the marketers of the festival, Jerry Media/F**kJerry, and is the second documentary following the Hulu production Fyre Fraud.
Ja Rule has criticised the documentary via his Twitter account, saying, "I love how ppl watch a (documentary) and think they have all the answers.
"I too was hustled, scammed, bamboozled, hood winked, lead (sic) astray!!!"