“Love is Blind” contestant Jeremy Hartwell says the producers behind the Netflix reality show plied contestants with booze, deprived them of food and water, and paid them less than minimum wage … and now he’s suing.
Jeremy, who appeared on season two of the popular reality dating show, is going after Netflix, production company Kinetic Content and casting company Delirium TV with a class action lawsuit.
According to the suit, obtained by TMZ, the show manufactured drama by forcing the contestants to film while they were drunk, starved, sleep-deprived and underpaid.
Jeremy claims the only drinks regularly provided to the cast were alcoholic beverages, energy drinks, soft drinks and mixers … he says water was strictly limited during long days on set.
He claims producers would sometimes even withhold hotel room keys so contestants couldn’t get sleep, while directing hotel staff not to provide the cast with food.
Jeremy says the combination of sleep deprivation, isolation, lack of food, and an excess of alcohol contributed to inhumane working conditions on the show … and says it made cast members hungry for social connections, altering their emotions and decision-making.
In the show, contestants go to separate pods to meet their dates, flirting and conversing through speakers while unable to see the other person. In order to meet in person, two contestants have to first get engaged.
Jeremy says he left the show feeling like a zombie and realized he was open to emotional manipulation during production.
As for the pay scale … Jeremy says producers paid the cast a flat rate of $1,000 per week and forced them to work up to 20 hours a day, 7 days a week, working out to as little as $7.14 an hour … well below L.A. County’s $15 minimum wage.
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Jeremy, who wants more contestants from ‘Love Is Blind’ and other reality shows to join his class action suit, is going after Netflix, Kinetic and Delirium for money, and he wants them hit with civil penalties for labor code violations.
We reached out to Kinetic Content … so far no word back.