NEW YORK (CelebrityAccess) — Woodstock 50’s former financial backers Dentsu Aegis Network, Ltd., and its subsidiary Amplifi Live, LLC, have fired back against festival organizer Michael Lang, accusing him of misrepresentation and incompetence.
In a court filing seeking an emergency injunction, attorneys for Dentsu and their affiliate Amplifi Live argued that Woodstock 50 organizer made it “impossible to produce a high quality event” and that there is no legal basis for the injunction Lang is seeking against Dentsu.
“W50 cannot meet its heavy burden on this application. Its wild claims are factually unsupported, run contrary to the plain contractual language, and are legally deficient. Nor does W50 show that its purported irreparable harm can be remedied by an injunction. Without a production company or proper permits, completing the many remaining tasks necessary to produce the Festival in a safe and secure fashion will be virtually impossible. W50’s application does not explain how an injunction will make the virtually impossible possible, instead it just insists that it be granted immediate control of Amplifi Live’s $17.8 million despite plain contractual language stating that Amplifi Live exercises sole control over the account. Any harm here has been caused by W50’s misrepresentations to Amplifi Live, W50’s misleading public statements, and W50’s incompetence,” attorneys for Dentsu Aegis wrote.
Last week, Woodstock 50 organizers took Dentsu and Amplifi to court, seeking an injunction to compel Amplifi to return $17.8 million in funding, which they allege the company had withdrawn from the festival’s bank account, and for them to continue collaborating in the festival’s production.
However, in its most recent legal filing, Dentsu’s attorneys paint Lang’s ambitions to continue planning the festival as unrealistic and accuse him of multiple serious misrepresentations about the event.
According to Dentsu’s filing, attorneys for the company claim Dentsu and Amplifi Live followed the terms of their contract with Woodstock 50 organizers and accused W50 of “repeatedly” violating the terms of the financing and production agreement.
According to the filing, W50 lied about the capacity of Watkins Glen, allegedly telling Amplifi in December that Watkins Glen International could support attendance of 150,000, which was later rescaled to 125,000 but suggested that the capacity could increase once permits had been secured.
However, in January, Superfly, who had been hired to produce the festival, told Amplifi the festival grounds could support only at most 75,000 people (including artists, staff, and volunteers) safely.
“W50 repeatedly ignored the safety assessment of the festival’s producer—a producer that W50 itself picked, and repeatedly insisted that the festival capacity was much higher,” Amplifi Live attorney Mark Greenwald wrote in the legal filing.
Amplifi also claims that when they learned about the capacity issues, they warned W50 not to commit to any artists while the festival budget to be reevaluated to align with the new capacity. However, according to Amplifi, W50 organizers continued to book and pay deposits to artists.
Additionally, Amplifi accused W50 of spending money on unauthorized expenses without seeking prior approval from Amplifi, even though such approval was contractually stipulated. Those expenses included renting an office, hiring an external accounting company, even though Amplifi was to provide accounting services for the festival and spending more than $120,000 on a publicity event.
The dispute is set for an initial court date on Monday.