The most infamous party planner of all time, Billy McFarland, just finished his six months of house arrest after serving nearly four years in prison, and to celebrate he threw a party and (pretty much) hired a reporter from the New York Times.
McFarland is the guy behind the most famous shit show of the millennium, Fyre Festival. In 2018 he pleaded guilty to accusations of fraud for organising the event. He then had to (after another charge of fraud) sit in a prison cell for 4 years before being confined to his home, the gym, and the grocery store for half a year.
As soon as he cut the ankle bracelet off (which he thought would be far more ceremonial than it actually was, saying “I thought it was going to be a big process, but they just hand you scissors and you cut it off”) he linked up with The New York Times, like, immediately after.
“Moments after removing the electronic ankle monitor … he was posing for a New York Times photographer and talking to a reporter whom he’d approached towards the end of his confinement with the help of a publicist,” the NY Times wrote.
The bloke’s got US$26 million (NZ$42.3 million) he has to pay off, largely owing to victims of Fyre Festival, though he does reckon he can get into tech and pay it off kind of quick.
“At the end of the day, I think I could probably create the most value by building some sort of tech product,” he said.
“Whether that’s within a company or by starting my own company, I’m open to both. I’ll probably decide in the next couple of weeks which path to go, do.”
When it comes to the fatal festival, Billy said it happened the way it did because of his inexperience/ignorance.
“I didn’t know what I didn’t know,” he said.
He also pushed back on the idea that the food was crap, specifically because of one picture of a sandwich that made the rounds online, saying that “there’s a reason there’s only one photograph of that.”
Both the Hulu and Netflix documentaries about the festival talk about how the Bahamian natives who worked at the festival were promised tens of thousands of dollars that they never actually received.
Billy boy said that “most of them were working on a day-to-day or week-to-week basis, and therefore suffered limited losses,” the NY Times reports.
Moreso, Billy threw a post-house-arrest party, and two of those Bahamian former Fyre workers attended the party.
Who knows what Billy will do next? It seems like he’s had a taste of attention and now just can’t get enough, he’ll probably need it too, seeing as every dollar he makes for the foreseeable future will be going towards those he scammed.