7:52 AM PT — A rep for Netflix tells us, “Linda Fairstein’s frivolous lawsuit is without merit. We intend to vigorously defend When They See Us and Ava DuVernay and Attica Locke, the incredible team behind the series.”
Linda Fairstein, the woman who helped prosecute the now-vindicated Central Park 5, is suing Netflix and director Ava DuVernay over her portrayal in “When They See Us.”
Fairstein filed the federal suit Wednesday, saying she fired off a warning to DuVernay before her series was released. Fairstein says she was concerned she would be portrayed in a false and defamatory manner. She says it fell on deaf ears because Ava’s only response was Linda had no right to object before seeing the series.
Once it came out in June 2019, Fairstein says every episode in which she appears portrayed her as a “racist, unethical villain who is determined to jail innocent children of color at any cost.”
In the suit, obtained by TMZ, Fairstein objects to nearly every single aspect of the case … as it’s portrayed in the series. She denies taking any of the following actions: unlawfully interrogating unaccompanied minors, calling for a roundup of “young black” thugs, manipulating the timeline to pin the jogger’s rape on the Central Park 5, referring to people of color as animals, directing NYPD detectives to coerce confessions, and suppressing DNA evidence.
If you’ve seen the critically acclaimed series, you know that’s the entire plot. So, Fairstein is claiming it’s ALL a lie, as far as her role in the case.
Fairstein says after “When They See Us” was released her career as a prolific crime author was destroyed. Her publisher and agents dropped her, she lost speaking appearances and was forced to resign from the boards of several non-profit organizations.
Fairstein is suing Netflix, DuVernay and her co-writer, Attica Locke, for defamation. She wants a public apology, removal of the scenes she calls false, and a disclaimer added that labels the series as a dramatization and NOT a true story. She also wants damages.