A former Fox News staffer, Laurie Luhn, whose allegations of being victimized by one-time Fox News Channel chief Roger Ailes were instrumental in his ouster from the network, has filed suit over her portrayal in an upcoming Showtime miniseries about the influential media executive. She is seeking more than $750 million in damages.
In a suit filed in the Superior Court of the State of Los Angeles, Luhn, a former booker and producer at the 21st Century Fox-owned cable-news outlet, alleges Showtime, series producer Blumhouse and author Gabriel Sherman, upon whose Ailes biography the series is based, are using her likeness to market and promote the series without her permission.
Showtime declined to comment. Ailes, who died in May, 2017, at the age of 77, denied a series of allegations of sexual harassment that were leveled at him starting in 2016.
Showtime’s series based on “The Loudest Voice in the Room” is expected to be eght episodes, and stars Russell Crowe as Ailes and Naomi Watts as Gretchen Carlson. Annabelle Wallis is slated to portray Luhn.
In the suit, Luhn alleges she was never made aware her interviews with journalist Sherman might be used in other works. “Sherman cashed in on Plaintiff’s tragic Fox News experience and the psycho-sexual torture she had endured by Ailes without so much as a courtesy notification regarding the Showtime and Blumhouse series.”
Whether Luhn has legal standing remains to be seen. In the suit, she acknowledges “11 hours of audio” interviews taking place with Sherman at her home in Encino, California.
Luhn provided sordid allegations about Ailes’ behavior to New York magazine in 2016, claiming he held sway over her for years while she worked at Fox News Channel’s Washington. D.C.. offices, pressuring her for sexual favors in exchange for help with her career and money.
Luhn is seeking more than $250 million in general damages and punitive damages in excess of $500 million, as well as the ability to see the production and halt use of her likeness without being compensated for its use.