HOUSTON (CN) – Producers of the “Walking with Dinosaurs” tour fired a gay costume supervisor after crew members called him a “sexual predator” and told him he was “not one of the boys,” the ousted artist claims in Harris County Court.
Johnny H. Smith of Houston, a professional theater and film costumer, joined the Creature Production Company to replace Shauna Mast, who agreed to stay on and train him before she left on a European tour.
Smith was hired to run and supervise the “skins” department – akin to a wardrobe department, only he made costumes for mechanical dinosaurs in addition to performers and actors.
Smith says Mast delayed and canceled training sessions because she was “consistently hung over, or inebriated, or too exhausted from the previous night’s escapades.”
He says male crew members on tour were disgruntled, because Mast was a “reliable party partner and reliable flirting partner,” a role Smith did not wish to play.
Crew member Mike Hamilton, along with Mast and other tour workers, allegedly criticized Smith’s skills and frequently commented on his masculinity and sexual history.
In his third week on the job, Smith was allegedly told he was “not one of the boys” and was being sent home because he did not fit in.
Hamilton pushed for his firing by telling managers that he wanted someone who would sit on his lap and expose her breasts, the lawsuit claims.
Smith was then replaced by a straight woman, he says.
He demands lost wages and compensation for the emotional distress and anguish he allegedly suffered. He is represented by Robert Teir of Bellaire, Texas.