I TOLD YALL ABOUT THEM BROKE ASS PROMOTERS THAT HAD ME LOOKIN BAD LIKE I WAS A NO SHOW FOR THE SUPERBOWL PARTYS …CHECK THIS SHIT OUT
TAMPA – It was billed as one of Tampa’s premiere Super Bowl parties, the two-night, star-studded Under the Veil.
But promoters Joseph Stuckman and Jakale Freeman, and their corporation, J&J Sports Marketing Group, are now accused of not paying multiple people back for either their services or their investment.
Former light heavyweight boxing champion Antonio Tarver filed a breach of contract lawsuit last week against Stuckman and Freeman in Hillsborough County Circuit Court.
Tarver’s company, AT Entertainment, co-financed Under the Veil, providing at least $70,000, according to a contract with J&J Sports Marketing. His company was to be reimbursed the investment, plus receive a portion of any remaining party profits once all vendors were paid.
A second company, DSK Entertainment of Orlando, also provided $70,000, per the contract. DSK officials could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
Tarver, who acted as co-host of the party’s second night, Jan. 31, also paid tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket to keep the party afloat.
Larry Ryans, a former Tampa Bay Buccaneer who now owns Global Event Specialists, served as event planner for Under the Veil. Ryans said Tarver stepped in Jan. 28 to pay the venue, the Museum of Science & Industry.
“MOSI was actually going to cancel the event,” Ryans said.
The cost to rent MOSI was estimated at more than $190,000. Freeman said the actual cost was “somewhere in that range.”
A MOSI spokeswoman declined comment.
Ryans said Tarver paid $20,000 to rap superstar Nelly, his scheduled Saturday night co-host, because Nelly also was not paid as promised by J&J Sports Marketing.
“It was just a bad, bad experience,” Tarver said, declining further comment due to the ongoing lawsuit.
Tarver’s attorney, Andrew Felix, declined comment.
Another host, music producer and performer Jermaine Dupri, canceled his appearance due to nonpayment, Ryans said. Dupri was supposed to be paid $100,000 to co-host the Jan. 30 portion of Under the Veil, he said.
A spokesman for Dupri did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.
Ryans also said he was not paid, per his contract, for the months he spent planning the event. Ryans said he also is considering legal action against Stuckman and Freeman.
“What J&J did, they portrayed themselves as guys that had all this money, and they didn’t,” Ryans said. “These dudes took a lot of people’s money and ain’t paying nobody.”
Steve Benz, owner of Tampa-based Benz Model and Talent Agency, said he is owed $11,660 by Stuckman and Freeman for 34 models provided by his company to dance at the event.
Benz said he has not heard from Freeman or Stuckman since early February. He said he likely will sue.
“I want these guys to realize they’re not going to get away scot-free with this,” Benz said.
The party was billed as the “ultimate VIP party” with promised appearances from celebrities such as Janet Jackson and Jamie Foxx. However, neither attended Jan. 30’s party as advertised. General admission tickets cost $100 for women and $300 for men, with VIP tickets at $300 for women and $600 for men.
Nothing went as planned, Ryans said. On Jan. 30, the day of the first party, workers arrived to find that there was no DJ booth, no podiums for dancers, no runway for a planned fashion show.
The issues continued with the Jan. 31 party. Celebrities were ushered to a private floor, away from guests who had paid up to $600 to interact with them, Ryans said.
Stuckman and Freeman, both of Tampa, denied they were to blame Tuesday when reached by phone. Wednesday, a cell phone for the men was no longer accepting voice messages.
Stuckman and Freeman blamed Ryans for any problems, including the nonpayment to Benz. Freeman denied that his company had a contract with Benz Models.
“We’re going through a lot of paperwork to see who we actually owe,” Freeman said.
Reporter John W. Allman can be reached at (813) 259-7915.