Actress Eva Green has called producers “asss” and crew members “peasants” in bitter arguments over a doomed £4m film project she is accused of sabotaging, the High Court is due to hear.
The 42-year-old French actress, a former Bond girl opposite Daniel Craig, signed on in 2019 to star opposite Helen Hunt and Charles Dance in the British sci-fi film A Patriot.
However, the production was shut down in October of this year after a spectacular altercation between Green, the executive producer, and star financial sponsors of White Lantern, and executive producers Jake Seal and Terry Bird.
The actress sued for her fee of £830,000 despite the film never being made, but then faced a counterclaim accusing her of deliberately damaging the production.
The warring factions are set to go head-to-head in a High Court trial starting on Tuesday (24p), on a case that airs vulgar messages sent by Green about people she worked with.
She is accused of calling Mr. Seal a “devious sociopath” and “madman” in WhatsApp exchanges revealed ahead of the trial, while she called Mr. Bird a “fucking moron”.
When the actress wanted “my team” around her while filming, she texted her agent to complain: “I need my team around me to deal with everything bad Jake [Seal] throws himself at me,” according to the court documents.
Green added: “My team will have to pull out and I will have to take his shitty Hampshire peasants.”
The Sin City 2 and Dumbo actress signed on in May 2019 to play Kate Jones, a Border Corps captain in a futuristic authoritarian state, with British writer Dan Pringle set to direct his own original script on a budget of £4m.
According to court documents, Green is accused of “engaging in proceedings that showed she had no intention and/or desire to complete production of the film.”
The actress claims that she made “unreasonable” demands regarding the hiring of crew members, changes to the filming schedule, change of location and editing of the script.
In the news, Green is said to tell Mr. Pringle, “At the end of the day, we want to get rid of Terry [Bird]. And his big boss [Mr Seal]”.
She then adds, “My name is Cruella.”
In one of the messages made in support of the allegation that Green was deliberately trying to undermine the film’s production, she agreed to “find a way to get out of Jake” [Seal]claws”.
She is said to have told her assistant to ignore messages from Mr. Seal and Mr. Bird, calling them “assholes” and saying, “I’m trying to move us elsewhere. But please don’t tell them or I’ll be sued.
“The movie will get other producers and we will be with the kind people. Just don’t answer. Pretend to be deaf.”
The trial aims to investigate in detail how the film’s production fell apart and who was to blame.
In mid-October 2019, a Green representative posted a message that she was “ready, willing and able to provide her services”, which was allegedly a deliberate lie.
It is said that she and co-workers pretended to be pleased with the production while privately seeking a way out, allegedly calling it “Operation Pretend”.
In her pleadings before the court, Green claims that she fulfilled her obligations under the contract and was wrongly refused to pay.
She says she had “approval rights” over the producers she hired and “wanted to have a good team to make the movie as good as possible.”
Green says she had “serious concerns about many aspects of the production in late July, including being misled about the defendant’s funding status and his negotiations with crew members.”
Green said she “completely” denies allegations that she destroyed the production or did not want the project to succeed.
“She was not trying to undermine or thwart the production of the film. On the contrary, she made every effort to make the film a success, including on several occasions she proposed to use her own money to hire a talented crew.
“However, she was concerned all along about the lack of progress, the lack of any proper pre-production, and the lack of professionalism of Mr. Seal and Mr. Bird.”
Green admits to sending the messages at the center of the case, but says they will be fully contextualized during the trial.
White Lantern Film (Britannica) Limited and the second defendant, SMC Specialty Finance LLC, said in a statement that they are “disappointed” to have to take legal action, including a counterclaim against Green, but are “confident” to “recover substantial losses” which they they claim were incurred because of Mrs Green’s conduct.”