British jewelry designer Kat Florence is suing the actor, who has dabbled in fashion design and has her own brand of high-end shoes, for not doing enough to support the launch of a collaborative line of diamond jewelry, launched in 2016. Parker’s business entity Tandu Productions is also named as a defendant.
Florence, through her corporate entity Kat Florence Design Ltd., told a New York federal court on Wednesday that Parker was paid $5 million in installments, along with 10 percent of all profits from the jewelry sales, which ended up totaling about $7.5 million, through a licensing contract that also called for her to publicly endorse the line through photo shoots, interviews and public appearances. Parker had final approval on the designs.
Although it looks as though Parker did publicly endorse the line and do some press around the time of its launch in fall 2016, Florence claims that “shortly after beginning the agreement, all good faith performance of the agreement ceased.”
A source with knowledge of the matter said Florence attempted to make a number of additions to the original contract after Parker negotiated and had signed it, demanding things like Instagram posts at a certain frequency, numerous exclusive sit-down interviews with magazines and a requirement that Parker wear the jewelry during public appearances. Parker refused the additions, which purportedly led to the lawsuit.
A sticking point for Florence seems to be the “red-carpet” launch event, which the company claims to have paid $1 million in fees to Edelman to manage and started planning months before the line launched. It allegedly took Parker three weeks to confirm a date and time that fit her schedule — a Tuesday morning to afternoon.
“This date and time could not possibly work for the evening product launch that was planned and was part of the contractual obligations,” Florence wrote in the complaint. “Notwithstanding, the defendant refused to provide any alternative evening times or dates.”
The launch event was subsequently canceled. But the jewelry line was released and Parker, after receiving partial payment under the contract, said she would be unavailable for promotional duties for the five months between late 2016 and early 2017 as she was filming her HBO show “Divorce,” the complaint claims. Even after that, Parker claimed her schedule was too “hectic” to attend other promotional events, the lawsuit alleges.
“These types of actions by the defendant have been commonplace throughout the operation of the agreement,” Florence contended. “The plaintiff’s business and the defendant’s contractual obligations have been secondary to other matters in her professional life. There have been accounts on social media in regards to such actions to the extent that there is confusion as to whether the defendant is even involved in the line and/or with the plaintiff. In fact, various customers of the plaintiff even questioned whether the declared co-operation between defendant Parker and the plaintiff ever even existed.”
Given the allegations, Florence is suing Parker for breach of contract and negligent misrepresentation and seeking damages related to costs producing the line with Parker, along with compensatory damages.
A representative of Parker declined to immediately comment.