A man is suing HBO over their use of a recording – which appears to show him trying to convince a woman to stay in the NXIVM sex cult – in their series, The Vow.
Marc Elliot claims the series creators used the recording without his consent.
He filed a lawsuit seeking more than $75,000 in damages from HBO and The Vow series makers on Tuesday in St Louis City Circuit Court, according to the Riverfront Times.
Elliot features heavily in the third episode of the second series of The Vow, which tells the story of the NXIVM cult, its leader, Keith Raniere, and its victims.
In 2017, the purported self-help organization NXIVM was revealed to have a sex cult at its core which exploited women – one as young as 15 – and several of its high profile members, including actress Allison Mack, were charged as a result.
Marc Elliot is complaining about a phone call featured in series two of The Vow
The NXIVM cult leader, Raniere, is currently serving a 120-year prison sentence for sex trafficking, forced labor conspiracy, human trafficking and multiple counts of racketeering — including sexual exploitation of a child.
Elliot, who has Tourette’s syndrome, got involved with NXIVM through its Executive Success Programs (ESP), which offered lessons on how to change habitual behaviors, reject needless fear, and gain full control over responses.
He maintains that the training cured his Tourette’s.
But in 2017, it was revealed that the workshops, operating near Albany under the umbrella group NXIVM, were concealing a sex cult called The Vow or DOS.
Within the DOS, women were turned into slaves, deprived of sleep and food, forced into bed with Raniere and branded on their pelvises with his initials.
They were required to hand over ‘collateral’ – including naked photographs – that would be made public if they told anyone about the existence of DOS.
Isabella Constantino also has Tourette’s syndrome and joined NVXIM through ESP too, but she left when she heard about the existence of DOS and female members being branded with Raniere’s initials.
The series, The Vow, includes a phone call between Constantino and Elliot after she left, which shows Elliot seemingly trying to persuade her to stay.
Isabella Constantino left NXIVM when she learned about the sex cult
In the recording, he said: ‘Some women decided to do a brand as a way to f******* bond.
‘If that was true, Isabella, that’s called illegal, that’s called assault.
‘I don’t think you understand what you’re doing, believing people that I don’t think are being very honest with you and there’s nothing I can do.
‘You have to decide who you want to trust.
‘You’re trusting people who are doing destructive things. You realize this might affect your Tourette’s.
‘There is going to be a day that you realize this stuff isn’t true.
‘I’m telling you right now, it’s not true.’
Elliot’s lawsuit reportedly alleges that he did not give filmmakers permission to use the recording of the call.
He claims that although he did sign a release in 2020, it only covered footage of him taken that July, not the call from two years before.
When Constantino was on the phone with Elliot, she was in New York, a state with a ‘one-party consent’ law for recording phone calls, meaning they may not have needed Elliot’s consent.
But the lawsuit focuses on whether HBO then had a right to use the footage in their series.
Elliot reportedly claims in the suit that the producers ‘knew that Plaintiff did not consent to the recording and did not waive any right to privacy in his voice, name and identification for the commercial use of the recording either by video or audio production.’
Elliott has continued to defend Raniere in the wake of his prison sentence.
A number of high profile people were also implicated in the scandal.
Allison Mack, 40, was released from FCI Dublin near San Francisco this week. Mack is pictured leaving federal court in Brooklyn, New York, in April 2019 after pleading guilty
Mack admitted to helping Raniere create a secret society of brainwashed women who were branded with his initials (above)
‘Smallville’ actor Allison Mack, who pleaded guilty over her role in the NXVIM sex-trafficking case was released from a three-year sentence early this year.
Mack, who began serving a three-year sentence at the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California, in September 2021, was released in July.
Best known for her role as a young Superman’s close friend on Smallville, Mack, 40, pleaded guilty in 2019 to charges that she manipulated women into becoming sex slaves for NXIVM leader Keith Raniere.
She spent less than two years at FCI Dublin, a low-security women’s prison perhaps most famous for holding actresses Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman for their roles in a college admissions scandal.
She avoided a longer prison term by cooperating with federal authorities in their case against Raniere.
HBO and Elliot did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk