Many of you may have seen the slightly defensive blog post we did last night. Just when you thought the story couldn’t get any more complex, it did.
The New York Post is reporting that the Sunderland family had a TV deal for a running series Adventures in Sunderland with Studio City, CA-based Magnetic Entertainment, as well as a documentary coming out about Abby’s trip. A visit to the Magnetic projects page confirms this. Here is a screenshot of the project description in case it is removed in the near future (click to see full size):
This story is quickly turning into a “I have a dream of sailing” to a “My dad needs me to go so we can have a TV deal.” It is the saddest thing because here is a girl with an awfully good sailing ability, (what seems like) a good head on her shoulders, and the ability to make a change in the world. It is despicable of any parent to jeopardize and exploit the safety of their 16-year old to earn some money from a TV/movie/documentary deal.
If she had gone of her own volition and it was really something she wanted (which maybe is still present, in spite of all this nonsense), I would have a different opinion on the situation.
Some may question the truthfulness of the New York Post, but don’t. It’s not gossip. It’s right there on the Magnetic Entertainment homepage, the Sunderlands had a TV deal before Abby left on her trip. They have also abandoned the effort to try to raise money to salvage her Open 40, Wild Eyes.
Abby, I wish the best for you. Your parents, however, are a different story.