'America's Got Talent' Got Drama To Deal With Already Act Claims Tyra Banks Traumatized Their Daughter
America’s Got Talent got drama already with Tyra Banks ahead of its May 30 season premiere: An auditioning act is suing the show’s production company after claiming that new host Tyra Banks traumatized her child.
According to an 18-page suit obtained by Deadline, the plaintiff and her husband performed a song written in honor of their young daughter as part of a March 19 audition. The judges hammered the singing duo and sent them away, but the real trouble didn’t come until later, when reports that Banks had harassed the young girl came to light.
The plaintiff alleges Banks “physically manipulated and verbally abused Mary [the girl]. Banks shook Mary’s shoulder, pulled Mary’s hair back and physically manipulated Mary. … Mary did not stop Banks’ conduct because Mary was fearful. Banks also insinuated that Mary was accidentally conceived, made fun of the performance and ridiculed [the song] in front of Mary, all in front of active cameras that were filming Mary. After the performance, Banks asked Mary to describe, in front of active and filming cameras, her opinion about Jane [Mary’s mother] and her husband after they were publicly ridiculed by AGT…As a result of her negative experience from AGT and Defendants’ abusive treatment, Mary was traumatized and became deeply depressed.”
The suit officially claims “intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress along with civil battery and civil assault.”
Banks was first announced as the new AGT host in March after previous host Nick Cannon quit abruptly. Cannon had claimed NBC was on a mission to silence him.
“Since I was a little girl, I’ve been obsessed with grandiose acts and performers who make the seemingly impossible possible,” Banks said in March after her new position was announced. “I love how AGT brings that feeling into everyone’s home, capturing the best of people who come out and give it their all to make those big, fierce and outrageous dreams come true.