Like her always-runway-ready mother Pat, Anna Cleveland knows how to make an entrance. But her unexpected exit from a documentary about her life is the focus of a $350,000-plus lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
The complaint, which was first reported by The Fashion Law, claims that Anna Cleveland balked on what was supposed to be a yearlong film project by All in the Works, after four months of filming. Her modeling agency, Next Management, is also named in the lawsuit.
An attorney for All in the Works, Brett Perala of Rosenberg & Giger, did not respond to a request for comment Thursday.
A spokesman for Cleveland and Next also declined comment.
The 14-page filing claims that the Los Angeles film and production company had filmed “a significant portion (but by no means all) and had incurred more than $350,000 in production and filming expenses. In April, All in the Works spoke with Cleveland about shooting a documentary about her that would include her “family background, upbringing, modeling career and fashion-related endeavors,” according to the complaint.p The premise was to cover a year in the life of her nascent career in fashion and modeling from the beginning of spring of 2017 through late spring 2017. “Anecdotal vignettes, interviews and archival footage concerning Cleveland’s familial background and upbringing among a colorful and influential circle of fashion elites including designers Karl Lagerfeld and Jean Paul Gaultier” were to be interspersed in the film. The suit claims an agreement was reached May 1 with an appearance release executed by Cleveland.
It goes on to say that after initially cooperating with All in the Works, the filming stopped in September while all of the parties were in Europe for the spring shows. At that time, Next inserted itself into the relationship with All in the Works and Cleveland, and “began to interfere,” according to the suit. On Sept. 29 after four months of filming, Next’s president Kyle Hagler allegedly said that all communications between All in the Works and Cleveland must cease immediately, making him the new point person for any correspondences. All in the Works then claimed to have been “stonewalled” by Next and Cleveland, unable to obtain any footage or interviews during that critical period when the shows were underway in Milan and Paris. That effectively derailed the project, according to the lawsuit.
The filing also noted that in October, Cleveland traveled to South America for what was said to be a Next-organized appearance on a TV show with Jean-Paul Gaultier. Their exchange allegedly relayed aspects of her upbringing and family history, but the production team was not informed of her television appearance and could not accompany her to record it for the documentary.
Like her model mother, Cleveland’s signature runway walk leans toward the dramatic. The 27-year-old Cleveland fired up Instagram this summer by sashaying down a Moschino runway engulfed in smoke and wearing what appeared to be a burning dress. Taking her cues from Jeremy Scott and Carlyne Cerf, she was buckled up with machinery at her waist by five people before she hit the catwalk. Cleveland may have wanted to follow her mother’s lead in terms of the now-kaput film project. Pat Cleveland has appeared in three documentaries “Ultrasuede: In Search of Halston” in 2010 and “Versailles ’73: American Runway Revolution” and “About Face: Supermodels Then and Now” both in 2012. Anna Cleveland was born in The Netherlands and lives in New York.